REALTOR.COM is going to allow non-REALTOR listings and more
In case you hadn't heard, REALTOR.com is moving ahead with plans to allow non-REALTOR listed properties to be displayed on their website along with rentals and new construction. This move is designed to make the site more competitive with Zillow and Trulia who have both overtaken the site in recent years because they've allowed anyone to post a property. The only thing not allowed with yesterday's decision was FSBO listings.
This is all good and fine but I'd like to remind the folks at REALTOR.com of two things while they trek off into this battle to regain the #1 consumer real estate site:
- KEEP THE DATA ACCURATE!!
- MONITOR WHAT GETS POSTED AND REFER TO #1
The biggest issue with the competition is that a large portion of the listings on their sites aren't accurate. The active listings are clouded with old, invalid listings by a wide margin and their property value estimates are...laughable. REALTOR.com has always been the most accurate source of listings because they got all their data on MLS services. Apart from Redfin (which is a broker), nobody else's site could compare. Consumers don't care! They like volume and lots of options, whether they're B.S. or not. This new plan gives consumers what they want, just as long as accuracy doesn't disappear in the process.
Let's talk about accurate property values. The Zestimate is the best marketing con of all time in the real estate world. It's never accurate and comes with huge disclaimers about how far off it actually is (up to 10% either way - minimum). However, REALTOR.com has a great AVM that is, in theory, more accurate. Why not include that in this new plan to compete? Beat Zillow at their own game and the consumers will flock to the site. Hey, it's just a suggestion :)
As long as REALTOR.com doesn't lose itself in this battle, they should do well. The only thing they should watch for is Zillow and Trulia both making efforts to clean up their data. If they get better at it, this whole game could get a lot more complicated.
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Bryan Robertson, CEO | T: 650.799.9951 | Email: email@example.com | Website: http://www.BryanRobertsonHomes.com |CA BRE# 01191946 | Catarra Real Estate, Inc | 171 Main St #220 | Los Altos, CA 94022