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Google is allowing UK users to search for property on Google Maps for the first time, following deals with listing providers including Zoopla and Countrywide.
The service shows property for sale or to let as an overlay on Google Maps, with users able to drill down by property type, number of bedrooms and number of bathrooms.
The rollout follows months of testing and replicates a similar offering in Australia.
A Google spokeswoman said, “Half of all search queries have a geographical component and up to 80% of these are property-related. It makes sense to have that on Google Maps.”
Google has signed up property services groups and websites including Zoopla, Eyzylet, Countrywide, Spicer Haart and Trinity Mirror Digital Property-owned SmartNewHomes.com. However, leading property portals Rightmove and Findaproperty aren’t yet involved.
Any property portal or aggregator can place their listings for free – internet aggregators tend to charge estate agents to display properties – providing “qualified leads and driving traffic”, according to Google.
But the service doesn’t allow listings by individual seller or vendor.
Miles Shipside, commercial director of Rightmove, has discounted Google’s possible encroachment on the current offering of property aggregators, according to reports.
“As a pure search engine, Google’s offering would appear to differ from the full service we’ve established for home-hunters, potential vendors and agents in the UK market. This can be seen in the property site that Google has already launched in Australia,” he said.