The ever-escalating proliferation of real estate technology threatens to drown real estate agents and brokers in a sea of must-have real estate tech tools. There are scores of special tools and hundreds of apps for real estate sites, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, AdWords, mobile websites, and on and on. There are even applications designed to help Realtors choose the most effective applications! With each tool promoting its ability to increase efficiency and success, how does an agent figure out what really works? Sometimes technology lives up to its promises — listing domains and mobile websites, for example, have proven their worth — but sometimes it doesn’t.

Rather than watching area real estate professionals flail around in indecision and sink under the weight of so many technology options, four years ago the Arizona Regional Multiple Listing Service threw local real estate agents a life ring when it convened its first Technopalooza. The spring showcase and expert evaluation of real estate’s hottest new tech tools has become a popular annual event that is now followed by a fall Learn-A-Thon that teaches real estate agents how to make the most effective use of new technology tools.

At this year’s recent Technopalooza, the biggest noise was generated by cloud computing, mobile alerts, QR codes and internet social networks. These were the technology applications deemed essential must-haves and useful up-and-comers by the national real estate gurus invited to speak at the event. Social networks were particularly singled out as one of the most effective technology tools available to real estate professionals. Real estate agents who haven’t already embraced Facebook, Google+, Twitter and other hot social networks were urged to get onboard or see their business suffer.

Also recommended at this year’s Technopalooza were:

  • Open Home Pro which allows agents to mange open houses from an iPad or smart phone;
  • Cloud CMA which allows agents to quickly generate and send to clients comparative market analyses; and
  • DotLoop, a transaction management tool that allows documents to be edited and signed digitally.
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