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'Placebook' for estate agents

Created on 14/02/2011 @ 08:31
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 Rightmove has been quietly testing a new social media website. The 'Placebook' of social networking, it has massive potential for estate agents, vendors and buyers.

In Beta mode at the moment, the ‘hyperlocal’ Rightmoveplaces takes the Rightmove plc proposition on from just offering a property portal.  RIghtmoveplaces will launch as a completely new platform late spring or early summer. When asked about the venture, Rightmove was at pains to emphasise its potential value to estate agents.

The site will allow people to write reviews about places, plus local events, restaurants, shops, schools, etc, as well as post photographs, questions, articles and links.

The site will also allow users to score the places they live, and pit their wits against Rightmove director Miles Shipside in a ‘house price game’.

The new site, which is separate from Rightmove although it links to it, has not been promoted or publicised anywhere.

However, Twitter followers were this week sent a tweet which dropped a small clue: “How much am I on the market for? I have 5 bedrooms and I’m a 600 year old windmill.”

Rightmove confirmed that Rightmoveplaces will launch “in the coming months”.

Tom Carter of local estate agents McCartneys described it as an innovative new social media website aimed at providing home-hunters with an at-a-glance overview of the locations where they are searching for property.

“Major brands are growing more and more aware of the need to provide relevant hyperlocal content to their consumers as shown by the recent launch of sites such as Google Hotpot, Facebook Places and Yahoo Local. Rightmove Places will bring this dimension to the property search process, which is by definition a highly localised process," he said.

The site will utilise user-generated content in the form of reviews, tips and comments on each location to provide a snapshot of what it is like to live there. It also offers agents the opportunity to demonstrate their local knowledge and further their profile in front of landlords, tenants, vendors and buyers.

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