A few weeks ago, I was invited to attend a small app launch from a relatively new online real estate startup in the Philippines called Lamudi. As has come to be the case when it comes to most app launches, I honestly didn’t expect much. Just something that would allow me to search for or browse real estate properties according to my preferences similar to what OLX and AyosDito already do.
However, I was pleasantly surprised. The app itself was pretty polished although it didn’t offer as much functionality as the desktop or even mobile site already did. These sorts of things iron themselves over time of course, but that wasn’t really what impressed me about Lamudi and what they had to offer. It was the sheer scope of what Lamudi wanted to do to revolutionize real estate in the country and how it’s done online.
First of all, Lamudi PH sources their listings from licensed brokers all over the country, particularly in Metro Manila, Cebu and Davao. Brokers can simply manage their accounts and add properties, images and descriptions, as well as request for support from Lamudi, such as professional photography packages where Lamudi sends someone over to take photos of the properties to be put on the site.
Now, brokers don’t necessarily have to pay anything to get any form of support from Lamudi PH. Many brokers in the country aren’t quite as tech-savvy as their competitors, in which case, they can simply call Lamudi for support in case they need assistance with managing properties on their accounts, such as having professional photographers come over to take pictures of the property that can then be uploaded to the site. Sometimes all you really need is some hand-holding, which is more than you can expect from other so-called real estate sites. Sure, with other sites, you can pay for prioritization in relevant search queries, but just don’t expect the kind of hands-on support you can get from Lamudi.
Of course, it isn’t all about the brokers. Private homeowners can sell their properties online too, allowing them to list their homes alongside other listings. Their accounts will be limited to just 5 properties though, which makes sense. After all, anyone selling more than that should probably be doing it through a broker.
I’m pretty sure some of you have already tried searching for real estate through the Internet. The experience on sites like Ayosdito and OLX are serviceable, but hardly as good as real estate sites in the US like Trulia or Zillow can offer. In fact, the experience doesn’t even come close. Sure, you can search for properties according to location, number of bedrooms, etc., but Lamudi does that and so much more!
Once you start browsing the site, you’ll start noticing just how much better online real estate sites in the Philippines could be. And what’s great is that Lamudi plans to do so much more. One particular feature I’m looking forward to that they’ve told me they have in the works is flood map integration. As bad as floods are getting here in the Philippines, home buyers want this kind of information, and more often than not, the sellers try to keep this information to themselves and let you learn the hard way. Hopefully, with flood map integration, you can purchase a home with the peace of mind that it isn’t in a location that’s at risk of flooding.
Of course, it’s important to keep in mind that that feature is still a while away from becoming a part of the online Lamudi experience in the Philippines. Still, I’m looking forward to it. Hopefully, it won’t take too long for Lamudi to become a household name for real estate in the Philippines.