Choosing which teams will advance in a March Madness tournament bracket is certainly no science. Everyone has a method to their madness: favorite mascots, best school colors, most attractive coaches and players, team record, intense algorithms, but one that may surprise you is real estate data. Coldwell Banker recently made a few pretty respectable brackets using data based on which teams home cities were the most expensive, most affordable, easiest to move to, newest, and best for singles.
Based on brackets completed using each of the criteria, they successfully predicted UMBC over UVA (the first time a 16-seed has beat a one-seed in the history of the tournament), Loyola over Miami, Buffalo over Arizona, and Marshall over Wichita State. According to ESPN, only 3% of its 17.3 million user brackets picked UMBC, and only 1% predicted the upcoming Loyola vs. Nevada match-up.
The real estate agency even correctly predicted the Sweet Sixteen match-up of Duke vs. Syracuse, a play-in team that few expected to make it past the first round, using the newest homes criteria. And based on the average year built for homes, they predict a Friday night outcome in which Duke beats Syracuse.
Using the most expensive criteria to fill out a bracket, the company has so far had a 24% accuracy rating. And while that’s better than this reporter’s bracket, it underperformed the company’s other metrics. The most accurate? Best cities for singles. Using that metric, Michigan’s going all the way.