Just a few hours to go until the end of 2019, and the end of the decade. Product #3 in my 12 products in 12 months has shipped, albeit in a very basic form.
Go to soldfor.im to check it out.
How much did that house sell for? Does the asking price for that 3 bed semi-detached make sense? Should I buy now, or wait a few months?
If you’re interested in buying or selling property in the Isle of Man, it’s not easy to answer these questions.
That’s where SoldFor.IM, the Isle of Man’s Property Sales Database, can help.
Search and filter over 25,000 property transactions, using multiple facets including address, consideration (price), sale date and property attributes like number of bedrooms.
The Isle of Man Government publishes a monthly Open Data report of Land Transactions in the Land Registry, covering the period from 6 November 2000 onwards.
The data is available, but not particularly user-friendly, so I took it and parsed it into a SQL database, then fed the data to Algolia and spun up a quick front-end search interface.
I plan to enrich the dataset with more detailed information about each property, but since there are thousands of properties, and not all sale listings are available, this may take some time!
I initially tried to avoid using a SQL database, trying instead to use flat file formats as a storage format. It quickly became clear I was having to reinvent SQL style functions by taking this approach. SQLite offered a lightweight way of handling the data locally.
I also learned that estate agents are keen to remove sold listings from their websites, and there aren’t many cached versions of these for some reason. Thanks be to Zoopla for storing much of the data I’ve been searching for.
I fancy having a go at a simple front-end only, bring-your-own-twilio-account mail merge tool for bulk SMS next… so watch this space.
Happy new year and best wishes for 2020 and the decade to come, to all my readers :)