Not just virtual apartments

This month we turn our attention to apartment sales and rentals. No one wants to buy a pig in a poke, and as opposed to opaque ads in newspapers, the option of viewing apartments on offer facilitates the search. An additional advantage is the ability to conduct a very specific search – then all you need to do is visit the property you’ve chosen.

The Webreality real estate server provides more or less complete services. You can search for real estate either by stating only the most basic criteria (i.e., sale or purchase, type of real estate and region), or by making a more detailed search, such as describing the size/layout of the apartment you want (i.e., 3 + 1). Other services the site provides are links to major firms in the field, such as design studios, deed registries, or construction authorities. It also offers the option of requesting electronic mail advice or consultation, or of having information on new properties sent to by e-mail.

A simple but well-arranged site. Services are aimed mainly at the international business community in Prague, so the site is only in English. The search form is not very detailed: if you are looking for an apartment to rent, you can enter only the locality, number of rooms, and top price. If you want to buy an apartment, you can add the form of ownership or any other conditions. You also can order news sent to you by e-mail, or you can send your offer to rent or sale real estate. But these options are “hidden” under the Help link, so users could easily miss them.

The main advantage of the largest Czech web site is the pleasant search method, which proceeds in individual steps by having users check the criterion that best suits them (i.e., 1+1 apartment, then size, price, etc.). You thus gradually approach a specific apartment. Seznam also offers a form for quick searches, a catalog of links to relevant firms in the field, and the possibility of having yourself notified by e-mail of new properties on the market.

User-friendly and well-designed, this site allows users to precisely specify what they need. If you can’t find something you like from the site’s current offer, you can send your specific requirements to the firm. If you want to sell or rent real estate yourself, there is a simple form on which to specify the required information. This site also allows users to request regular emails regarding new properties on offer.

Another very well laid-out site. The introductory page shows how many apartments are available or how many people are looking. Besides the options of rentals or purchases, users can find a specific person who is interested in the real estate you are offering. Searches work on the convenient principle of “checking boxes”, or submitting criteria in a detailed form. Placing ads is also simple, and a service for sending informative bulletins to a mobile phone or an e-mail address is a matter of course.

A new section of this financial web site is focused primarily on entrepreneurs and small and medium-sized businesses. It provides information on financial products, leasing for firms, mortgage loans, or supplementary pension insurance for employees. Entrepreneurs can also find advice on how to increase staff loyalty.
This two-sectioned site is for personnel workers and people looking for jobs. Job offers can be found alongside links to firms and agencies that are looking for employees. A job seeker can find out what a structured CV should look like or how to find a job abroad, and a firm can create an on-line ad with qualifications.
This site details the electrical situation in areas affected by the floods. Damaged locations are marked in color on the map on the introductory page. Additionally, you can use a search form to find out if electricity is turned on on a particular street, or other relevant information.
The Economia publishing house, operator of the site, has launched this one dealing exclusively with financial news. Check out reports from markets or companies, profiles of securities traders, mutual funds and banks, job opportunities in the world of finance, and commentaries on various economic topics.

word of the month:
Intelligent agent
– On the internet, an intelligent agent (or simply an agent) is a program that gathers information or performs some other service without your immediate presence and on some regular schedule. Typically, an agent program, using parameters you have provided, searches all or some part of the internet, gathers information you’re interested in, and presents it to you on a daily or other periodic basis. An agent is sometimes called a bot (short for robot). The practice or system of having information brought to you by an agent is sometimes referred to as “push technology”.
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