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SmartZip Introduces Investment Ratings for California, Florida Properties

Pleasanton, California's SmartZip, Inc. has announced the public beta launch of its Web site, ""SmartZip.com"":http://www.smartzip.com, and the introduction of SmartZip Score, analytics-based investment ratings for residential properties, including foreclosures.
Historically, more than 20 percent of all homes purchased in the United States are for investment purposes. SmartZip says its Web site is the first in the industry to offer independent ratings and investment tools expressly for residential real estate investors.
""SmartZip.com"":http://www.smartzip.com launches with more than 12 million investment-rated homes in California and Florida, two of today’s top markets for real estate investment. Over time, the company says it will roll out its ratings across all 50 states.
Home prices are at historic lows and mortgage rates are still well below the levels of years past, making now an ideal time for investors to get back into the market. In addition, in February, Fannie Mae announced a new policy that allows qualified investors and second home buyers to obtain up to 10 loans, replacing the previous four loan limit.
Tom Glassanos, president and CEO of SmartZip, said, ""There is immense pent-up demand from investors looking to capitalize on this opportunity. With [our launch], SmartZip brings transparency to the best investment values in two of the top markets, California and Florida, opening them up to all investors nationwide.""
SmartZip explained in a press statement that the new SmartZip Score is the first quantitative property rating to offer a risk-adjusted assessment of the investment potential of residential real estate, by applying proven stock and bond rating analytics to a comprehensive base of real estate investment attributes.
Using a 1-100 scale, SmartZip Score gives investors and homebuyers a tangible method for assessing if a property is really worth buying. Properties are rated two ways: a ""growth"" score for risk-tolerant investors seeking above-average capital appreciation and an ""income"" score for risk-averse investors looking for consistent monthly cash flow. Through the company's Web site, users can research and compare markets, then find and confirm top-rated for-sale and foreclosure properties - all based on investor criteria such as SmartZip Score, cash flow, appreciation, and school ratings.
SmartZip says its site and rating tool offer benefits to a range of audiences. Investors can identify the markets and properties that best fit their investment needs. They can compute rental income and expenses, project long-term cash flow and appreciation, and assess how to maximize after-tax returns.
Lenders can use SmartZip Score to determine present and future collateral value of a property, assess the size of potential loss in foreclosure, and simplify the decision of whether to foreclose or modify a mortgage.
For sellers and listing agents, the tool can be used to calculate optimum price for rapid sale, differentiate the value of competing properties, and demonstrate the value of a transaction. The site also allows these users to market their properties to a national buyer pool.
Avi Gupta, VP of research and marketing at SmartZip, commented, ""Online real estate sites are focused on what a home costs and not on what it’s really worth. SmartZip Score is an independent, disciplined methodology that gets to the fundamentals of property value. In a time of uncertainty, fundamentals, not price, count most.""

About Author: Carrie Bay

Carrie Bay is a freelance writer for DS News and its sister publication MReport. She served as online editor for DSNews.com from 2008 through 2011. Prior to joining DS News and the Five Star organization, she managed public relations, marketing, and media relations initiatives for several B2B companies in the financial services, technology, and telecommunications industries. She also wrote for retail and nonprofit organizations upon graduating from Texas A&M University with degrees in journalism and English.
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