Owning a property is probably high on many people’s agenda for their family/growth/future/financial planning in Singapore. Whether they are planning to own a public housing or private properties, people search for property listings in Singapore at different stages of their life, from getting a new property, moving to another new property and even selling their property.
How easy is it to search for property listings in Singapore? There are currently a few websites/portals that potential buyers/sellers can visit and check out. I used some of the property listings websites/portals before, doing some research into second hand public housing flats should I decide to move out on my own. I was even researching on two storey HDB shophouses for potential business investments too! My experiences using some of the property listings websites/portals were alright, it wasn’t fantastic and at times, cluttered with too many things on the page itself.
When I went for MOGUL.sg property search portal launch event, I wasn’t too sure how this new property search portal would turn out. MOGUL.sg uses Singapore Land Authority’s OneMap geospatial data and that is something that caught my attention. The OneMap is probably not as popular as Google Map (for Singapore context IMHO), although OneMap has a lot of details inside them.
Upon listening to the presentation by Mr Gerald Sim, CEO and Founder of MOGUL.sg, I was able to view this new property search portal and have a better understanding. After the presentation, I was able to get a hands on with the laptops available at the event for us to experience it for ourselves and try it out. The user interface (UI) is clean, uncluttered and easy to use, with the OneMap on the side, the user can do a lot more things/inputs to “search for their perfect/ideal home location”.
Whether you are a property buyer, property seller or property agent, I strongly encourage you to experience MOGUL.sg yourself! Try it out and there is a world of difference between current property search websites/portals in the market. To all my friends in the property industry, you have to check them out!
Now, let me share more information and details of MOGUL.sg –
Dubbed “Singapore’s smartest property portal,” MOGUL’s secret sauce is its implementation of custom keywords – which are generated from the Singapore Land Authority’s OneMap geospatial data – to help users search with greater granularity.
Traditional property portals let users filter their search by selecting from a small number of parameters such as district, location, price and type of property. The problem: The results swarm in by the hundreds, and even thousands, making the search unwieldy and time-consuming.
Enter MOGUL.sg’s keyword-based search system. It works just like Google Search. In its database are over 5,000 – and growing – custom keywords that describe the characteristics of the property that the user is searching for. Keying in “near North-South line” will show all property listings that are 0.5 km away from any MRT station along the red line. Combine a second keyword, “near supermarket”, and the system filters out homes which are more than 300m from any supermarket. Throw in more words such as “hawker centre”, “hospital”, “sports complex” and “park” or physical features such as “high floor”, “point block” or “boat dock”, and the home seeker gets the results he or she is looking for.
Gerald Sim, Chief Executive Officer and Founder of MOGUL.sg says: “The proliferation of property portals over the last decade offers consumers more choices but the search process has become too complex and unwieldy over the years. MOGUL.sg aims to use A.I. to simplify these processes and make the matching between property owners and home seekers easier and more transparent.”
MOGUL.sg is one of the pioneer start-ups housed at the Singapore Land Authority’s (SLA) recently-launched GeoWorks at Alexandra Road. GeoWorks was set up by SLA as an industry centre to galvanise the geospatial industry by connecting geospatial businesses, entrepreneurs as well as users and support them with the resources and expertise to catalyse geospatial innovation and solutions.
Harnessing OneMap data for smarter searching
MOGUL.sg makes use of SLA’s open-source OneMap which provides highly localised, granular and authoritative government geospatial data and services to the public. For example, OneMap provides information on multiple building types and amenities such as hawker centres, schools, child care centres and expressway exits.
OneMap’s routing API even recognises that void decks are unique buildings where people can walk through. This is important for MOGUL.sg to define the meaning of the word “nearby.” For example, when a user keys in the word “nearby hawker centre” the system will list all hawker centres within 3 minutes of walking time, considering the user’s ability to cut through the void decks.
“Having the most accurate and updated map data empowers our keyword-search system with powerful context. We may be the new kid on the block but integrating OneMap is our competitive advantage which will differentiate us,” added Mr Sim.
SLA Geospatial and Data Director and Chief Data Officer Ng Siau Yong said: “Location-based data is playing an increasingly integral role in our daily lives. We set up GeoWorks to encourage the growth of a geospatial-enabled community to leverage on geospatial technology and analytics to develop innovative solutions to benefit the wider community. We are pleased to be able to facilitate the development of MOGUL.sg by pioneering a GeoTech company based in GeoWorks.”
No ads in MOGUL.sg
The growth of advertising in property portals has made it a battle between agents with the deepest pockets to get onto the top of search results. Getting to the top of the list is often based on how much money the agent is spending instead of delivering the most relevant results to the home seeker. In addition, the organic results are often listed in chronological order with no regard for the degree of relevance to the user.
Mogul.sg does not support ad-listings because its primary goal is to deliver accurate and relevant results for the home seeker.
“We think that users are tired of having to scroll through pages of ads before even reaching organic results from real home owners. We want to do for property search what Google did for the Web search industry in the early 2000s – deliver accurate and useful search results for the users,” added Mr Sim.
Smart A.I. search with more relevant results
With MOGUL.sg’s keyword-based system, home seekers can easily narrow their search down to a manageable number of properties that match all their requirements (e.g. west-facing, near a primary school or any MRT, etc.). And if the home seeker doesn’t find what they’re looking for, MOGUL.sg’s in-built AI will scan all future listings and automatically recommends the ones that suit their search history.
At MOGUL.sg, users can also organise their favourite listings into folders, which can be shared with partners and family members.
Helping home owners find a match through property concierge services
MOGUL.sg also offers a property concierge service for users who do not want to scroll through multiple listings or contact multiple agents. MOGUL.sg’s hand-picked concierge team can help the user by being their only point of contact throughout their real estate journey.
“Instead of focusing on advertising revenue, we want to move to an agent subscription service which levels the playing field for buyers, sellers and property agents,” added Mr Sim.
MOGUL.sg is currently offering free listings to agents for the first year and $365 for the subsequent year.
Smart Search — Home seekers can look for properties using custom keywords and receive in-built AI recommendations.
Property Tagging — OneMap automatically tags keywords to properties that are listed; sellers can further refine the keywords or add more manually.
Up-to-date map — With OneMap support, MOGUL.sg’s map is always up-to-date with the latest building, address and road information.
Property concierge — A selected group of property agents in MOGUL.sg’s agent network forms the property concierge team. They personally filter through messages to ensure that spam does not reach home buyers and sellers alike, as well as recommend properties to potential buyers based on their keyword searches. One property concierge communicates with the home owner as the single point of contact.
* Information and pictures courtesy of MOGUL.sg and GLOO PR *