It’s being reported that Google has been in on-again, off-again talks to buy real estate search engine Trulia.
Trulia is reportedly valued between $150 to $200 million, but that doesn’t mean that is all Google would have to pay. A few months ago the Big G acquired AdMob for $750 million, the Yelp purchase is rumored to be around $500 million and there are rumors that the company is looking to invest a total of $1.5 billion, meaning it still has $250 million to invest. Make of that what you will.
There have been rumors for all of 2009 that Google was going to get serious about real estate searches, so the idea of the company buying Trulia makes perfect sense. The real estate search site allows users to to research homes by zip code or for entire cities across the United States, and if it was integrated with Google Maps, would make a powerful addition to the service.
Zillow is currently the biggest player in the real estate search space, but the sources talking about this story say that Google is more interested in Trulia due to it being located in the San Fransisco area, and also its lower valuation. Trulia has raised about $33 million in venture capital since its launch in 2005, while Zillow has raised about $87 million since its inception.
The combination of the Yelp and Trulia acquisitions would seem to indicate that Google is getting very serious about more localized services for its users. The addition of these two companies would make Google a one-stop shopping experience for anyone looking to move, as they could both shop for a home and check out the businesses around a possible home. If one or the other of these rumors is true, it seems only logical that the other one is also.