Written by: Jiří Vašek
Searching for a new flat or house can be time-consuming and frustrating. Trips across town during lunch or on weekends often end in disappointment, and comparison-shopping is nearly impossible. Or is it? Well-designed realty web sites are making the market more user-friendly than ever.
This is one of the oldest web sites dealing with housing, and it is affiliated with the “tvůjdům” site. You can draw inspiration there, or you can learn the details associated with taking out mortgages. These are all extra services of the site, the main focus of which is real estate trading. An interactive map of the country invites you to mark your region and specify your requirements. The next page, which contains all the offers, is well laid out graphically and contains additional, more detailed links. By requesting a search of real estate advertised within the last three days, users can avoid the disappointment of discovering that the place they want is already sold or rented.
This on-line real estate database has been in operation since 1996. It lists over 60,000 offers, working together with 780 real estate agencies. All the agencies have access to the database so that they can keep it updated. Just fill in the appropriate form and the site will forward your e-mail request, and the agencies will contact you themselves. After you register with the Reality-on-line system, agencies will send you pertinent specified offers within 15 minutes following their publication. The database’s introductory page also offers other valuable information, such as a list of appraisers, a summary of public auctions, and a section with brokers’ tips.
An internet magazine on housing and lifestyles that also contains a catalog of firms, products, and services with roughly 150 items, saved under a map of categories link and covering a wide spectrum of often narrowly specified offers. Such information can be helpful for real estate owners or anyone still looking for a home. There are windows in which you can enter your offer or requirement. The site strictly separates apartments, family homes, recreational facilities, and land.
Although similar in name to a site we have already discussed, the information source here is based on a different principle. It includes seven regional sites that cover the real estate market throughout the Czech Republic. Advertising on the regional sites is of greater interest to local advertisers that it would be on a nationwide site. The entire project is financed solely by banner ads. The publication of offers is free of charge for real estate agencies, which no doubt increases their interest and results in a large number of offers on these sites.
The Ministry of Regional Development is charged with housing policy, and its web site contains info on such topics as the right to housing in an international context, social support for rent, etc. It also provides data on the number of existing apartments according to ownership, the number of newly constructed projects, and average apartment prices throughout the nation. Prague is the most expensive market, while the least expensive areas are Chomutov, Teplice, and Česká Lípa. There’s just one thing this site won’t help you with – finding a home.
The new Ministry of Informatics site offers the latest information on public administration. Under “Občané a Podnikatelé” you will find advice and recommendations for resolving complex living situations. The site also contains translations of European Union guidelines.
This archive of articles contains many types of advice, such as how to get municipal housing, or how to deduct costs for repairs to a municipal or a privately-owned apartment (performed at your own expense) from your rent.
Czech On Line recently changed its portal Volný to make it more attractive and easy to navigate. The new design enables voice service communication as well as connection via ADSL, and still offers free email.
Cocktails are enjoying a renaissance, but not every bartender knows how to make them. If you’ve ever gotten a Mojito when you ordered a Cuba Libra (or vice-versa), the information at this site could be of use to you. It may inspire you to mix drinks at home as well.
|word of the month:
– The computer world welcomed this abbreviation just a few years ago. It stands for Universal Serial Bus, a new standard for interconnecting computers with peripherals such as keyboards, mouses, printers, scanners, digital cameras, and 127 other types of devices. Not only does it offer substantially higher transfer speeds (up to 12 Mb/s) but also the option of connecting external devices live – i.e., without having to restart your computer. It even supplies small peripherals with its own power, so the large tangles of wires that previously connected them to their own power sources are gradually disappearing. The USB standard doesn’t require any memory or ID addresses, since its support is already built into the computer’s operating system.