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Real estate listings site Zillow on Thursday launched a new version of its iPhone app that incorporates its Mortgage Marketplace and new financial tools to help people manage and finance home purchases.
Zillow has caught the attention of tech watchers and investors because it is one of the few tech IPOs from this year that still has a higher stock price than it had when it opened. When Zillow debuted on the NASDAQ in mid-July, the price greatly fluctuated, but ended up settling above its $20 opening price. As of Wednesday, Zillow was trading around $25 a share.
Zillow’s push to polish its popular iPhone application stems from incredibly wide usage. The company said that people shopping for homes view more than 2.5 million homes each day on Zillow from smartphones and tablets. Zillow also has apps for iPad, Android, BlackBerry and Windows Phone 7.
“Real estate is inherently mobile, and our goal is to provide people with information about homes – and home financing – whenever and wherever they need it,” said Zillow CEO Spencer Rascoff in a statement.
Zillow already offered a separate iPhone application for its Mortgage Marketplace — a place for borrowers to connect with lenders to find loans — and the tools associated with the Marketplace. But now Zillow has incorporated all of those tools inside the primary Zillow app for easy access (and probably so people actually know about them). The company also updated the app with faster map performance and made it easier to save searches and favorites.
Zillow lists the following tools as new additions to the primary app:
• The Payment Calculator helps consumers estimate what their monthly payment will look like for a particular home that interests them.
• The Affordability Calculator helps shoppers narrow their home search to those within a specific price range.
• The mortgage shopping experience enables users to request and receive personalized loan quotes, read lender reviews, and connect with a lender to start the pre-approval process with one tap of their finger.
Are you a Zillow user? Do you think the company can continue to find an audience in a stagnant housing market?