Home shoppers weigh all sorts of criteria when thinking about buying a home: How are the schools? What about crime? Are the neighbors cool?
Now, INRIX and Windermere are partnering to answer another important question: What are the commute times to and from the workplace?
Using INRIX data, Windermere home shoppers can now enter their work addresses on properties and get an estimate on a commute time for various days and times. Dubbed INRIX Drive Time, the service will arm agents and home buyers “with information to improve the home-buying process,” said INRIX CEO Bryan Mistele.
As we’ve reported in the past, Seattle startup Walk Score is expanding in this arena as well, allowing apartment dwellers to discover commute times by car, transit, bike and walking (Interestingly, the traditional Walk Score ranking appears under the INRIX Drive Time tool on the Windermere site).
“The difference for us is that other technologies show commute options for the current time, our chart will show actual drive times for regular commuting hours,” said Shelly Rossi, vice president of communications at Windermere. “This means that our results are not limited by the current traffic and conditions, and therefore, provide home buyers with a clearer idea of what their commute would be like if they lived in that home.”
According to the National Association of REALTORS, 73 percent of home buyers consider drive time to work as a key buying criterion.
The new Drive Time service is being rolled out in the 10 states where Windermere — the largest real estate company in the western U.S. — operates.
“You don’t guess at the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, year built or school district, so why should your drive time be any different?” said OB Jacobi, president of Windermere Real Estate. “We’re committed to making the home buying experience a pleasant one for our clients, as this is often the biggest purchase they’ll ever make.”
The deal marks a bit of a new direction for INRIX, which has historically sold its traffic data to auto manufacturers and navigation device makers. Is real estate the next frontier for INRIX?