Testing An App Concept: Your Input Is Requested

6 Replies

Imagine if an app existed in which you could select a metro U.S. city and it populated a bunch of metrics relevant to real estate investing markets (e.g. population growth, unemployment, crime, job diversity, median house price, average rent, vacancy rate, etc). Also imagine that the metrics display thresholds so you can gauge whether they are "good" or "bad" (based on a pre-determined criteria of what is "good" or "bad").

1. Would you find it valuable?

2. Would you pay for it? 

3. How much would you pay for unlimited city searches? 

My first though is wanting it more granular than at the city level. I can look at NYC or Atlanta, or Topeka, and figure out the crime rate and such... but those stats vary widely based on the neighborhood. I don’t know that I’d make any decision based on city stats.

Just my $0.02

@Mike McCarthy good point. There's some neighborhood specific data on city-data.com but it's laborious to click through. Unfortunately most key metrics are at the city level. But some folk (particularly out of state) have a tough time narrowing down cities. Something to ponder though for increased utility. Thanks for the input.

It would be an interesting app.  I assume you would be gathering data from the census bureau or any of the good neighborhood sites.  The problem will be that that data will be old and not totally accurate.  For example, have you seen the estimated rents and property values on Zillow?  Total crap.  

So IMO, if there was an app that was accurate and up to date that would be great but I don't see how you would get that at the city level.

@Jacob Sampson Yes, it would be pulling in data from varying sites - ones that are more trustworthy and update at least yearly. I wouldn't use Zillow, for example, mostly census, city-data, etc. The data exists at the city level for major metro cities at least. The idea is that it is aggregated into one place so you don't have to go to go poking around on different sites. AND that it provides analysis of the metrics too rather than just list the metrics (e.g. how does the population growth rate compare against what is considered a good market or the national average?). Thanks for the thoughts.

@Michelle St. Claire , kudos for using BP to test out the concept.  I did the same when I had my initial ideation of Burbz.

This appears to be focused on investors that go nationally wherever the hottest markets are, and not investors who are focused on specific markets.

The value prop to me is too contingent on the number of deals I need it for.  If it's 3-4 different markets a year, I'll do the research manually.  If I'm doing a lot of deals in different markets then I see the value in accelerated data.

Would the user be able to set their own criteria for what's good/bad?  That would be more valuable.  Every investor and deal is different, flexibility would be useful.

@Kenny Dahill Thanks for the reply. Great job on Burbz! I took a look at your website; great to know your services exists for my future out of state investment ventures. 

Yes the app concept is primarily focused on investors who are trying to narrow down markets and/or diversify their portfolio across cities/states. Seasoned investors could also refer to it when pitching an investment opportunity to potential lenders (i.e. to provide reassurance of the chosen rental market) and/or to keep their finger on the pulse of their current investment market.

I like the idea of being able to choose your own thresholds for metrics. Great suggestion! There could be a default setting for those just getting started and still uncertain what good metrics look like. 

Your comment about how often it would be consulted is a valid one, and something for me to explore.

I appreciate the insights. Cheers!