National real estate firm Coldwell Banker today said they’d set up virtual shop in the extremely popular online world of Second Life. This reportedly marks the first national real estate company to sell homes within the virtual community, where it is apparently popular to purchase and rent virtual land, so players can build their own stores, homes and event sites.
Coldwell Banker said it has an inventory of more than 500 homes on 550,000 square meters in the Ranchero section of the Second Life mainland, one of the largest home developments in this virtual world. These virtual homes will vary in price based on size and style, including southwestern, colonial and contemporary, among others. In addition, Coldwell Banker is offering homes perched atop a hill overlooking the ocean. Second Life residents can meet with a Coldwell Banker sales associate avatar in the brand’s virtual office and schedule an appointment to tour virtual properties of interest. Homebuyers who close a purchase with Coldwell Banker will receive free “virtual furniture” for their new home.
For those participants who do make a purchase, they can do so using the V-Commerce function, in which the avatar can touch a virtual palm-scanner that will automatically provide Coldwell Banker with the buyer’s qualification status.
“We are incredibly excited to be a part of Second Life, the most explosively popular community on the Internet,” said Charlie Young, senior vice president, marketing of Coldwell Banker, in a statement.. “Like the Second Life members, today’s homeowners are technologically savvy so it’s paramount that we offer them the opportunity to engage with, and experience, our brand in a variety of different ways, whether in the real or virtual world. Second Life is an excellent virtual platform that will enable us to interact with consumers where they are meeting today, in online 3-D communities.”
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