I have several thousand real estate transactions for which I have both the buyer's and seller's zip code of origin. I am trying to get ArcGIS to compute the distance between these zip codes for each observation. I am not an expert in GIS by any means, and need some help figuring out how to do this. Thanks.
You will need a file of the zip code centroid geometry or you will have to geocode your own data
Then you will have to decide if the straight-line distance will suffice or you need a more detailed road distance which would require more time effort and expenditure.
How is your data arranged currently? is the owner - buyer information already paired in a data set?
Thanks for the quick reply. Yes, the data is paired. So what I have done
is gotten the centroid of both the zip codes in terms of decimal degrees
latitude and longitude. Then used an Excel function to convert the
difference between these two locations. Not the most elegant of solutions,
but it seemed to work.
Professor of Economics
School of Business, University of San Diego
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If you are using a great circle calculator then you should be fine. You could compare closely paired values with calculated using measure tools in Google Earth. Alternately, you could add your excel file to arcmap, using the longitude/latitude coordinates from the seller data as one file, then the same data for the buyer as another file. You would then have a visual to check either manually. You could then set an appropriate projection for your area(s) to calculate planar distances. But in short... I suspect your approach is the quickest.