How to Use Google Earth to See a House Close Up
By Melissa King
Whether you're hunting for a home or scouting out your next vacation destination, you can use Google Earth for a detailed look at almost any address in the United States. If you're interested in exotic locales, Google Earth also offers street-level views of many major cities in Europe, South America, Africa and Asia. When you look at an address in street-level view, you can zoom in, rotate the camera and move down the road to see the surrounding neighborhood or area.
Launch Google Earth, and then enter an address in the Search bar. Click "Search" and wait for Google Earth to zoom in to the address.
Click the orange peg-man icon on the right side of the window.
Drag the peg-man icon over to the map. Blue lines on the map indicate where street view is available.
Drop the peg-man icon on the road closest to the address you want to see. The map will switch to street view.
Position the mouse pointer in the center of the window. Click and drag the pointer left or right to rotate your view until you can clearly see the desired house. Alternatively, click the eye icon in the top-right corner labeled "Click to Look Around." While clicking the eye icon, hold down the mouse button and drag the pointer in the direction you want to look. Click the "N" to reset the camera to a north-facing position.
Click one of the arrows on the hand icon, located below the eye icon, to move around as if you're walking down the street in that direction. Click the top arrow to move north, for example.
Click the "Plus" button on the right side of the window to zoom in for a better view. Click the "Minus" button to zoom out. Alternatively, if your mouse has a scroll wheel, scroll forward to zoom in and scroll back to zoom out.
Click "Exit Street View" in the top-right corner of the window when you're done looking at the house.
- If street-level view isn't available for your address, you will enter ground-level view instead. This is Google's less-detailed rendition of the area. You can enter ground view yourself by clicking the building icon next to the "Exit Street View" button.
- Viewing a house in Google Earth is very similar to looking at it with Google Maps. Google Earth has a few more advanced features, such as measurement and recording tools. If you can't download or use the Google Earth program, go to Google Maps page (see Resources) and search for your address. Click the "Satellite" button for a detailed top-down view of the area. Drag the peg-man icon to any blue-lined road to enter street view.
Melissa King began writing in 2001. She spent three years writing for her local newspaper, "The Colt," writing editorials, news stories, product reviews and entertainment pieces. She is also the owner and operator of Howbert Freelance Writing. King holds an Associate of Arts in communications from Tarrant County College.