It was bound to happen. Pokémon Go, the wildly popular augmented reality game launched less than a month ago, has already been used by bars and restaurants to attract additional business, so why not use it to sell real estate? It turns out folks looking to rent or sell houses and apartments are featuring the game in their real estate ads.
Numerous listings have been popping up across North America on everything from Craigslist posts seeking roommates, to house listings by owners and real estate agents looking for a competitive edge. The listings prominently feature the property’s proximity to Pokémon Gyms and Pokéstops, two critical elements for successfully playing the game.
Doug Hawks of Redmond, Washington, is one of those homeowners who saw the game’s potential to attract buyers who also are avid Pokémon Go enthusiasts. He listed his house for sale about two weeks ago on Zillow’s Make Me Move, a portal for homeowners who want to sell their property themselves.
Hawks included in the listing that there is a Pokémon Gym less than a five-minute walk from the house, and there are three Pokéstops within a seven-minute walk.
“It was everywhere in the news, on social media, and I was familiar with the game it was based upon, Ingress, and I knew it had the same infrastructure, so I checked out the game and it turns out we have all this stuff around us,” Hawks, 42, said. “So I thought this will probably be interesting to people who play Pokemon.”
While Hawks has had some interest in the house, no one has yet mentioned the Pokémon Go information in his listing, he said. And if the house doesn’t sell in the next couple of weeks, he plans to list it with a Realtor. Will he keep the Pokémon Go information?
“I intend it to be part of our standard listing,” he said.
Realtor Mandy Panozzo-Clay recently told Inman, a news site for the real estate industry, that she used Pokémon Go as a way to attract potential buyers to an open house.
“It was super basic. It was in our town’s ‘hip’ page with a link and photo of the house I was having an open house at and it said ‘looking for Pokémon? We have plenty here at…,’” Panozzo-Clay said. “Got a lot of response and some clicks to my website. I will do some more for my open houses next week.”
Of course, not all associated with selling real estate are so gung-ho. Some agents told the site there were limitations regarding the tactic.
“I think Pokémon Go has the potential to spark innovation along the same framework as the game, by targeting real estate consumers as a way to spur interaction, facilitate live real estate events like open houses and neighborhood tours, etc.,” Inman Ambassador Stacie Perrault Staub was reported as telling Inman.
“Do I think Realtors should start trying to buy ads on Pokémon Go? No. But might it start conversations with app creators in our space? I’d bet on yes.”
Tips for Selling Your House
If you’re looking to sell your house, there are many things to consider before putting it on the market. Have you found the right Realtor to properly price your property? Is the condition of your home at its best? And while you might not think about your credit when you put your home on the market, selling your home can have an effect on your credit.
Whether you’re looking to buy, sell or both, it’s a good idea to check your credit scores regularly. You can do so using Credit.com’s free credit report summary, which provides two free credit scores, plus a credit report card that tells you how you’re doing in the five key areas that traditionally determine your credit scores.
Main Image: Steve Debenport; Inset Image: Screenshot via Zillow