Before moving to Paris to live the fancy Parisian life, Ginny Cain wrote weekly on AG about marketing and brought her corporate wisdom and deep real estate industry marketing insight to the world of real estate and helped our readers to improve their own marketing strategies.
Ginny wrote me recently in a tizzy about her own real estate experience in her return to America. We agreed that there was certainly an AG story to be told, so here are her words:
I am a buyer. I’m looking for a small condo in Pleasanton, California. And like most buyers I’m starting my search online. I’m also associated with the real estate industry and have seen the listings go from a big book with yellow pages in a real estate office that changed on a daily basis to the mass syndication of listings online.
It’s just common knowledge these days that the inventory of for-sale property is available online, right? To that I say yes, but. Indeed there are an abundance of listings online, but results can vary wildly depending on what website you are on.
As a consumer, I’m confused.
City: Pleasanton, CA
Price range: $150,000 to $250,000
Housing type: all
I went to Realtor.com, the most “comprehensive source for real estate listings” and got seven listings in the search results.
I went to Trulia.com and got 29 results.
I went to Intero.com and got 25 results.
I went to Remax.com and got 11 results.
What is going on? A few explanations could include:
- Exclusive listings – Really? Do agents still do that?
- Pending listings – Does the website show both active and pending listings?
- Foreclosures – Does the website (like Trulia.com) list foreclosures and REOs?
- New construction – Don’t homebuilders put their listings on the MLS?
The syndication of for-sale listings online was supposed to make it easier for the home buying consumer. Not so much. With websites parsing the listing information in such different ways, it just serves to confuse.
The good news? Real estate agents are still the most reliable source for current listing information.