Maps are an integral part of the RPR experience, and RPR offers robust searching capabilities via maps. To begin map searching, first conduct a preliminary search for properties in any geographic area. After your search is complete, change the Search Results page from List View to Map View using the controls above the results. (Next time, your search will default to this view.)
Now you’ve opened up a new window for customized map searching. In this view, which features a large map, you can define your own search areas by drawing them on the map, or by displaying the outlines of geographies such as neighborhoods, ZIPs, cities or counties on the map and then searching one or more of those areas.
Use the gray toolbar above the map to create and save your customized search. You have five search options in the horizontal toolbar:
- Drive Time
You can draw a box on the map by clicking the gray “Box” button and then drawing on the map. Searching a box (rectangle or square) can be helpful for finding a potentially representative sample of properties in an area you do not know well.
The box is drawn from the upper left corner to the lower right corner. After you finish drawing the box, you can search in the area you drew and save the area to use again. The search and save options both appear in the pop up dialogue after you finish drawing. You may also modify the area using the Edit This Area link in the popup. See more details about using your saved search, below.
If you want to search for all properties within a three-mile radius of a location, you can use the radius tool. Like the box search, the radius search is helpful for assembling a sampling of properties, or it can be useful if your search involves a landmark or property to which you need proximity.
Click the gray “Radius” box and then click on the map where you want to locate the center of your circle and hold down. Drag away from the center point to create the outside boundary of your circle.
You can adjust the length of your radius to enlarge or shrink your search area. Click on the circle you drew and use the Edit this Area option. Then click on the outer point defining the radius and drag it to a new location on the map. You can save your search using the same methods described for the box search.
You can draw a polygon on the map by clicking the the gray “Polygon” button. Then click on the map and draw any shape you want to search. Your shape can be as simple as a triangle or can have many sides, for instance if you’re using a curved road as the boundary of your search. A polygon search can be helpful when you have clear, linear boundaries for the area you want to search, for instance a highway and a river.
You can save your search using the same methods described for the box search.
The Drive Time search option is a more sophisticated version of the radius search. RPR’s data on traffic patterns enables the display of approximate driving times, in average conditions by day and time of the week. This search type is helpful, for instance, if a client is searching for a property no more than 15 minutes (by car or walking) from a specific location like an office or another property.
When you choose this option by clicking the gray “Drive Time” button and dropping the pin on the map where you want to center your search or entering a complete street address in the search address field, you will see an option to search by time of day, day of the week, length of the journey, and whether your trip is by car or walking. You can save your search using the same methods described for the box search.
Use the Distance search option to measure 3, 5 and 10 miles from a point. Like the Drive Time search, the Distance searches for properties within a certain distance of another location.
Initiate the search by clicking the gray “Distance” button. Then drop the pin on the map where you want to center your search, or enter a complete street address in the search address field. You will see a map overlay outlining each distance. Click on the number 3, 5 or 10 to run the search. You can save your search using the same methods described for the box search.
You can search the map by ZIP code, neighborhood, city or county. First, select the geography you wish to search using the “Show Geographies” dropdown on the far right of the map. Boundaries of the type of geography you selected, e.g. ZIP codes, will be shown on the map and you can click to select them.
Clicking on the map acts as a toggle. Click once on an area to select it for your search. Click again to deselect it. Select multiple areas by clicking on them one at a time. You can click “Reset Map” to begin anew. When you have finished selecting your area or areas for searching, press the blue Search These Areas button or the Save, then Search button to execute your search. You can save your search using the same methods described for the box search.
Save Your Search
Use the blue Save link above the map to save any search you have executed. Your custom search will include any filters you have added to the search results, such as showing only distressed properties. When you press the button, the field with the name of the search will become editable, so that you can name your search anything you wish. Give your search a descriptive name—“Distressed in Park Ridge” is an example—so you can find it even if you save a lot of searches.
You can run this search again from the Saved searches dropdown next to the Search bar on the home page. All of your saved searches, custom areas and home areas will be shown as links in this dropdown. When you work with a saved search, you can further modify it and choose the Save As option to preserve your new search separately from the original.
Or, if you frequently use the same area for your searches, you can save that area for subsequent visits using the polygon and radius search tools. When you draw a search with either of these tools, you will see the option to save your search before you run it, again giving it your own name. You can return to this Custom Area again and again, and layer different search parameters onto it each time as you desire.
Below the map and to the right you will see the option to display layers of data atop the map (“heat maps.”) It’s helpful to choose the “gray” map background option (as opposed to the aerial, overhead or road views) when using the map layers so you can better visualize the data. Choose an indicator such as “Year Built” or “Flood Zones” to see similarities and differences across the area you searched. A legend for interpreting the data is shown below the map.
The Geographies dropdown adds boundaries for cities, ZIP codes and neighborhoods to the map. It is convenient to add the outlines for, say, ZIP codes or neighborhoods to your search map after your search, so you can see which properties fall in a particular ZIP or neighborhood.
Other Map Controls
Controls in the upper right corner of the map allow you to modify your map view. You can switch from aerial mode or overhead mode to road map mode or street view mode, depending on whether you want to see a road map or a picture map. Try the gray mode for viewing data. Plus, you can zoom in or out or pan in all four directions using the same control set. The heat map control is located below the map, allowing you to superimpose housing data on the geography shown on the map.