GIS stands for Geographic Information System, it is a technological tool for managing spatial/geographic information, it can also be applied to real estate decision making.
A GIS is made of computer hardware such as the GPS you have in your office, it also makes use of software application and also the people who are empowered with the knowledge of how to carry out real estate analysis with GIS.
It is important to note that GIS and real estate have one thing in common, what is it? location!!! in real estate decision making, location is an important factor. Location drives property values and usually have significant impact on real estate valuation opinion.
Using GIS in property valuation and appraisal makes it easy to analyze economic benefits of one location over another or better make justification to valuation comparable. It makes it easy to generate property maps, identify spatial distribution of comparable and analyze factors affecting valuation opinions.
Modern real estate decision making have gone beyond individual subjectivity, it requires skills and competence on locational intelligence that GIS offers.
Application Areas of GIS in Property Valuation
Subject Property Map Preparation; you can use GIS to map out subject properties and present it in a visually appealing manner. You can also assign data values to features on the map and give visual illustration on your opinion of property values in the location under consideration. These maps from GIS can be embedded to valuation reports, investment analysis reports and brochures.
Comparable Properties & Site Investigation; GIS can be used as a tool for collecting and visualizing spatial distribution of real estate comparable. You can use it to present information on where, what and why a property at a certain location does not have the same market value with another similar property in a nearby location. You can use it to analyze factors affecting property values such as economic activities, commercial highways or topographical nature of land areas.
Spatial Analysis of Real Estate Investments; When analyzing real estate market for a valuation assignment, locational intelligence is usually required, you can use GIS to measure the distance between a comparable property and a subject property, you can also establish factual information on how radius and proximity to a shopping mall or other market drivers affect real estate investment market at a given location.
Getting Started with GIS
To integrate GIS to your property valuation/appraisal practice, you need a working knowledge of the following;
- GIS Software; QGIS or ARCGIS
- Handheld GPS – Global Positioning System
- Google Earth – Professional Edition
- Training Support
You may be interested in one of my articles titled ‘Modern IT Tools and Real Estate Business Operation‘ it is an eye opener on why you need to adopt modern IT Tools in real estate business and stand in the direction of global competitiveness.
Before you leave, kindly check my post on ‘Digital Marketing Technology for Real Estate Agencies’