Data in Real Estate

The round-table discussion on March 22nd, 2018 was held to establish a foundation for Augvest's continued exploration of the uses of alternative data in real estate.

To kick things off, Matei Zatreanu of System2 provided a quick overview of the kinds of analyses his firm has been doing around real estate. They mostly revolve around geolocation data; examples include:

  • Assessing viability of keeping specific business locations open
  • Figuring out where each location's customers are coming from
  • Site selection for new businesses, construction projects, etc
  • Tracking migration patterns

There are several other noteworthy data sets beyond geolocation data:

  • Demographic data: LiveRamp was mentioned but there generally seem to be no good up-to-date datasets
  • MLS aggregators: Zillow, Realtor.com provide ZIP code level data; can be scraped for higher granularity
  • Contractor data: BuildFax, BuildZoom aggregate project and permit data from contractors
  • Can track hotel occupancy; for AirBNB, AirDNA has an archive of daily scrapes

Beyond supporting due diligence on specific investments, data capabilities can also support deal sourcing. On the back of the JOBS act of 2012, there has been a proliferation of online real estate investment platforms like PeerStreet and RealtyShares. In our conversations with these firms we've learnt that on the debt side the bottleneck is not capital but deal flow.

If you are interested in specific datasets or use cases beyond what is mentioned above, please email us.