Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past couple of weeks, you’ve probably heard of Pokemon GO. And if you haven’t heard of it, surely you’ve seen the many children (well…and adults) sprinting down sidewalks, wading into shallow creeks and even running into an occasional tree in search of those elusive Pokemon.
But for those of you still a bit confused – it’s alright.
Making a comeback from its late 1990s/early 2000s fame, Pokemon GO is based on the Japanese anime cartoon which featured a young boy named Ash Ketchum and his journey to catch Pokemon and become the best Pokemon trainer in the world.
The Pokemon GO app has taken the cartoon to a whole new level by allowing users to use their phones to track, catch, train and “do battle with” Pokemon out in the real world (which is why you’ve seen so many people walking around aimlessly looking at their phones recently).
And while this is a great game with a bit of nostalgia for millennials, it’s also making a splash in the world of Real Estate.
Pokemon Go For Real Estate
Really? Pokemon GO for Real Estate? It may sound a bit out there, but people are doing it and seeing results.
But let’s back up a minute because, in order to understand the power of Pokemon Go for Real Estate, you need to first be familiar with how the app and game work.
When users are searching for Pokemon out in the “wild,” they’re ultimately looking for Pokestops and Gyms:
- Pokestops – Where users can go to collect the items and rewards needed to help their Pokemon grow/become more powerful.
- Gyms – Where users can take their Pokemon to do battle with other users, team up with others, and defend their territory.
The kicker here? These Pokestops and Gyms are literally all over the map, often times appearing in businesses, public spaces, parks, and even neighborhoods.
So, as you can probably imagine, those areas are highly trafficked by gamers looking to expand their Pokemon and connect with others.
And since some neighborhoods are closer to Pokestops and Gyms than others, Realtors® are starting to leverage this in their listings.
For example, Pokemon mentions are popping up in real estate ads and listings on Craigslist, Zillow and even Facebook – like this recent listing boasting that the home for sale is “conveniently located between two Pokemon Gyms and has 8 Pokestops within walking distance.”
Others have reportedly had successful open houses with large turnouts just by mentioning the fact that there are Pokemon or Pokestops in the home and surrounding neighborhood.
On the flip side, some find the whole Pokemon GO craze to be a bit annoying and instead of broadcasting the fact that they have Pokestops nearby, they’re saying that their homes have “Zero Pokemon features.”
The Potential Risks with Pokemon
While Pokemon GO is good fun, there is something you need to consider before using the app to sell houses. Using Pokemon images without permission could potentially result in a large fine and a lawsuit for copyright infringements, so if you’re planning on using a picture of Pikachu or Charzard (common Pokemon) to sell your home, just be aware that this is a potential risk.
The likelihood of a lawsuit taking place against a real estate listing is small, but it’s better to know the risks ahead of time. If you’re concerned about this, just play it safe by not using the images and sticking to text only in your listings.
It’s crazy to think that a simple app could really spark this much of a craze, but Pokemon fans are dedicated, and they truly may be interested in a home in part based on the number of Pokestops nearby. Capitalize on this while the fad lasts!
What do you think of using Pokemon Go for real estate? Share in the comments!