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How to use your smartphone to find a new home
UScellular shares tips on how to use your smartphone to aid in search
Technology continues to change the house hunting experience for both renters and buyers. Along with the guidance of a trusted real estate agent, the latest smartphone tech and apps can help users become smarter and more efficient in the search for their next house.
In fact, research from the National Association of Realtors revealed that in 2019, 81% of older millennials, 80% of younger millennials, 78% of Generation X and 68% of younger boomers who purchased a house actually started their search on a mobile device.
“Buying or renting a house is a major step in people’s lives, and cutting-edge smartphone technology now has the ability to make the process easier and more enjoyable,” said Nathan Waddell, UScellular’s director of sales in East Tennessee. “When it comes to finding a new house, a real estate professional can never be replaced. However, thanks to the latest apps and a high-speed wireless network like what UScellular offers, consumers’ smartphones can help them feel more empowered in the process.”
Whether it’s searching, financing or moving, UScellular shares some great apps that can help users find their next house:
- Hunting for a House: Zillow, the most downloaded real estate app for both Apple and Android users, lets users narrow down a house search to the details, such as desired number of bathrooms. Zillow listings include immersive photos, virtual tours, estimated house values and past sale prices. com®’s Sign Snap feature allows users to take a photo of a real estate sign and instantly get details about the property, like neighborhood noise level or whether it’s in a flood zone.
- Searching for an Apartment: When looking for rentals, save time with com. The app provides real-time information on availability, rent prices and specials on more than 1.1 million comprehensive listings. Answer a few questions on Apartment List and the app will recommend the rental properties that best meet the user’s preferences from pet policies to move-in fees.
- Considering Neighborhoods: Choosing the right neighborhood is easier with Trulia. The app displays 34 overlay maps that look at schools, amenities, crime and commute times. Trulia also allows users to virtually tour neighborhoods with original photos, local stories and even drone footage to get a broader view. After moving in, apps like NextDoor connect users with community groups and neighbors, maintenance services and local businesses.
- Getting a Loan: The buying process moves fast. Keep up by using technology to start the loan approval process. While most banks have an app to apply for a loan, there also are specific resources such as Mortgage by Zillow for new buyers available for Apple and Android The app includes a mortgage calculator to estimate an affordable price range and lists customized mortgage rates from multiple lenders. Digit is a great resource during the early stages of house hunting. The app analyzes income and spending patterns to help prepare users for a down payment on a house. It alo calculates an affordable price range and strategies to save or pay off debt.
- Moving In: Moving often means selling unneeded belongings or quickly purchasing items to furnish a new place. Apps like Letgo and Facebook Marketplace can make it quick and simple to sell and shop for secondhand items. TaskRabbit connects users with local movers, contractors, painters, house cleaners and other service providers. Most utility companies also offer apps to easily pay and manage services on-the-go.
- Making a House, a Home: With Houzz, users can browse more than 20 million high-resolution house interior and exterior ideas, see how products would actually look in a space with the Room 3D feature and connect with more than 2.5 million home improvement professionals – including architects, general contractors, interior decorators, repair professionals and more. Find the perfect colors with Project Color by Home Depot or virtually decorate any space with DecorMatters’ augmented reality (AR) technology, that includes lighting, home furniture, decorations and art from popular furniture stores.
- Insuring a House: Many insurance companies like State Farm, Allstate and American Family have helpful apps consumers can use when comparing options for insuring a house and personal property.
In addition to these helpful smartphone apps, UScellular offers tips for how house hunters can use the technology already in their smartphones, like:
- Use your smartphone to take pictures of houses that you like to help you remember specific features of the house, yard or neighborhood.
- The calculator in a smartphone can help to estimate a monthly mortgage and other living costs.
- Make sure you take your smartphone while house hunting and use it to make calls in different rooms of the house to ensure it works where you need it.
UScellular is the fourth-largest full-service wireless carrier in the United States, providing national network coverage and industry-leading innovations designed to elevate the customer experience. The Chicago-based carrier is building a stronger network with the latest 5G technology and offers a wide range of communication services that enhance consumers’ lives, increase the competitiveness of local businesses and improve the efficiency of government operations. To learn more about UScellular, visit one of its retail stores or www.uscellular.com. To get the latest news, promos and videos, connect with UScellular on Facebook.com/uscellular, Twitter.com/uscellular and YouTube.com/uscellularcorp.