Posted by: Timothy Ellis (The Tim)

Tim Ellis is the founder of Seattle Bubble. His background in engineering and computer / internet technology, a fondness of data-based analysis of problems, and an addiction to spreadsheets all influence his perspective on the Seattle-area real estate market.

38 responses to “Poll: How often do you look at real estate listings online?”

  1. Scotsman

    Less often than I used to?

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  2. ARDELL

    Somewhere between once a day and constantly throughout the day. 3 to 5 times a day.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  3. Kary L. Krismer

    RE: ARDELL @ 2 – Ditto. Unless I’m out of state.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  4. Peter Witting

    RE: Scotsman @ 1 – Perusing listings was an absorbing hobby of mine for many years. However, about 5 years ago, I lost interest.

    I couldn’t figure out how anyone could afford the lovely remodels and rennovations in my area (View Ridge, Ravenna), and I knew I certainly couldn’t. I found more contentment in the house I lived in, not the porn on the internet 9so to speak). Now I can’t look past the carrying costs and hassle of moving, which dulls the enjoyment, as well.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  5. Ira Sacharoff

    All the time. I’m a bit obsessive /compulsive, and take up nasty habits pretty easily. So looking at listings 5 or 6 times a day? It’s safer than crystal meth and crack, isn’t it?

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  6. David Losh

    For the Real Estate people, do you search the NWMLS or other online sites?

    I only search the NWMLS, and occasionally check Estately, redfin, and John L Scott. Zillow is th only site that has some potential, but it is completely screwed up, and may never be worked out.

    It makes no difference because every one involved made money on the IPO, and the hope is redfin will do the same.

    John L Scott is the only local company that has a decent search function.

    So my question is what are people searching when they search “online?”

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  7. Blurtman

    RE: Ira Sacharoff @ 5 – And in comparison to on line porn? It is on line RE porn, afterall, in’t it?

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  8. ChrisM

    RE: David Losh @ 6 – Easy: houses & manufactured houses on 4+ acres non-short sales under a dollar threshold that hit the market in the past three days.

    What are you looking at?

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  9. David Losh

    RE: ChrisM @ 8

    Which search would you use?

    More specifically is the NWMLS a superior search to what the public gets.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  10. ChrisM

    RE: David Losh @ 9 – No clue on NWMLS, as I’m just a consumer, locked out of access to RMLS & NWMLS, but Kary infers NWMLS is far superior to what the public sees, and I can well believe it.

    In my experience Zillow is a steaming pile of cr** because of their shoddy data (they think there are 5+ 39 bathroom houses in Richland, WA). Redfin is awesome. I’d love to use other sites as well, and I’d love to see locations in the boonies, such as Sequim, Spokane, and Ashland Oregon.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  11. ARDELL

    RE: David Losh @ 6

    I search on the mls of course. But when I see something that may be of interest to one of my clients I look at it on Redfin and Zillow and in the King County Parcel Viewer while evaluating it before I go see it. I also google the address and the owners…and sometimes the neighbors. :)

    I also send the listings to my clients via a Redfin Link, and they do the same to me.

    The only time I send clients a listing via the mls is if it is sold, so that they can see the inside photos which are no longer in the public view.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  12. T. Y. Lee

    Redfin is my favorite, because they seem to have the most information available to me (which floors the bedrooms are on, agent comments, tax history, school district, whether or not it’s a short sale, etc). I agree that zillow is

    I check online listings every day. I get curious about houses I looked at but didn’t buy.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  13. StillRenting

    I search about once a day. Redfin is the most user-friendly, in my opinion. It’s easy to navigate and information is organized well. I wish it had a few more search options (e.g., ability to search by school district or school.. this is the first place I have lived where school district boundaries were not determined by municipality boundaries, which can be very annoying), but overall it seems they provide the most information, including their agents’ opinions of houses they have viewed. Also, their daily email updates on “favorite” properties and saved searches are informative without feeling like a sales pitch.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  14. Rumpole

    Real estate online=yuppie porn.

    I used to look a few times a day, but I’m older now and don’t have that kind of stamina.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  15. softwarengineer

    Is MLS

    Is MLS Massive Liquidity Strain?

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  16. Kary L. Krismer

    By ChrisM @ 10:

    RE: David Losh @ 9 – No clue on NWMLS, as I’m just a consumer, locked out of access to RMLS & NWMLS, but Kary infers NWMLS is far superior to what the public sees, and I can well believe it..

    I haven’t done a piece for over a year comparing the various consumer sites, which means that I also haven’t used those sites for over a year (other than clicking on a link to a listing someone provided). Probably time to update that.

    I do have to say I like the JLS mobile app. The NWMLS is coming out with one soon, but they want to charge agents $3.50 a month for its use. Considering I can use their full site on my phone, I don’t really see the point. I don’t even use the NWMLS’s mobile site on my phone.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  17. Kary L. Krismer

    By ARDELL @ 11:

    I also send the listings to my clients via a Redfin Link, and they do the same to me. .

    Why not the NWMLS system? You don’t want to have a record of which listings you’ve already sent, and when? You don’t like the ability of the client to save a listing as a “favorite” or a “possibility?” Granted not many clients do the latter, but I find the former rather useful.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  18. wreckingbull

    No one has mentioned automated emails from Redfin yet. Since I have all my searches dialed in, I just browse daily emails, usually deleting them without looking at any of the listings. Once in a while, something catches my eye and I will actually click on the listing.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  19. David Losh

    It has seemed to me for a long time, and I have raised the issue a lot, that the NWMLS should have a consumer site. They can charge for the service like the mobile app, or add it into the cost to Brokers.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  20. Kary L. Krismer

    By David Losh @ 19:

    It has seemed to me for a long time, and I have raised the issue a lot, that the NWMLS should have a consumer site. They can charge for the service like the mobile app, or add it into the cost to Brokers.

    First, please clarify your question from yesterday in the Twitter thread.

    Second, as to this, I think it’s purposeful. The brokerages want their websites to drive consumers to their agents. That works, so some extent, so they don’t want to change that. If the NWMLS did have a consumer site, it would likely be very crippled.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  21. Dirty Renter

    By Blurtman @ 7:

    RE: Ira Sacharoff @ 5 – And in comparison to on line porn? It is on line RE porn, afterall, in’t it?

    Under which category would ‘Realtors Gone Wild’ fall under?

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  22. David Losh

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 20

    Kary, it’s the main feed to all sites, and each Brokerage can frame the listings, all listings, with the company logos. So I don’t see how it could be crippled.

    This is exactly what I’m talking about, how could you not know how the NWMLS works?

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  23. Kary L. Krismer

    By David Losh @ 22:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 20

    Kary, it’s the main feed to all sites, and each Brokerage can frame the listings, all listings, with the company logos. So I don’t see how it could be crippled.

    This is exactly what I’m talking about, how could you not know how the NWMLS works?

    Yet another pointless dig on your part. Do you really not think I don’t understand how the NWMLS feeds data to the brokers? You really are a piece of work.

    I don’t think your framing idea will work, which is something you didn’t mention in the post I responded to. I won’t explain why because you don’t understand how the Internet works. And you don’t understand what brokerages want. /sarc

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  24. David Losh

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 23

    Framing is already an option.

    This is a typical response from you.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  25. ARDELL

    To Kary and David,

    There IS a public search side to NWMLS, and there has been since 2000 at least.

    It also has all property that is listed in the mls, unlike many and most brokerage sites, and so includes the rental listings.

    It exists because there is a rule or law saying it must exist, but it is downplayed and “crippled” by design for the reason Kary noted.

    http://www.nwrealestate.com/nwrpub/

    The search function is difficult to navigate and the display looks like an advertisement. But that said, I’m pretty sure it doesn’t eliminate the rental properties or other types like vacant land or mobile homes that many private brokerage sites don’t allow through the feed to their websites for their own reasons.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  26. Kary L. Krismer

    By David Losh @ 24:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 23

    Framing is already an option.

    This is a typical response from you.

    No it’s not. Name one website that frames the NWMLS site.

    Typical response from you.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  27. Kary L. Krismer

    RE: ARDELL @ 25 – Yes, that exists, but it’s about as good at broker sites over 5 years ago. I haven’t gone there for so long I’d forgot that part even existed.

    About the only time I go to that site is if I want to link a stat page.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  28. Toby Barnett

    I look at homes constantly throughout the day and even more so now with the lack of inventory.

    With regards to searching for homes, I search the NWMLS because data consistency on public IDX’s is unpredictable. The public has many options to choose from; national sites to local broker sites.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  29. ARDELL

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 27

    Still…it may help ChrisM given it doesn’t restrict the feed as to area and property type and gives him direct access to detailed info regarding how to contact the listing agent for additional info and property viewing. More important for remote areas on acreage, vacant land, rental listings, etc that are often chosen to not be included on brokerage sites.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  30. Kary L. Krismer

    RE: ARDELL @ 29 – Good points. I didn’t get much past it’s horrible bathroom filter (something that’s been a problem on many of the brokerage sites too, but an improving situation there).

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  31. David Losh

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 26

    Of course framing is available.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  32. David Losh

    RE: ARDELL @ 25

    The alternative is to have agents use redfin, or guide clients to redfin for property searches. The Brokerages that make up the Listing Services should implement search functions. We are way past the days when people will simply contact the Brokerage if they want listing information.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  33. ChrisM

    RE: ARDELL @ 29 – Thanks, Ardell. That site is in fact helpful, even as truly awful as the user interface is.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  34. Toby Barnett

    RE: David Losh @ 32 – Why would agents use a public IDX when the NWMLS is available? I guess if one’s dues are caught up then agents do have alternatives.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  35. David Losh

    Because Ardell is right, clients use redfin.

    Windermere has very little search capability. John L Scott is good, but beyond that most Brokerages use an IDX that is more or less behind the times.

    We are at a point where the public could, and should have access to the NWMLS, as a service they can subscribe to for a period of time, similar to what agents can do. It would be cost-effective.

    In the past I think Brokerages were afraid of a discount Brokerage business model, but we are seeing those discounts are killing the Brokerages that use that as a selling feature.

    I just think the NWMLS can make a better consumer experience, and uplift the industry in the process.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  36. Kary L. Krismer

    By David Losh @ 31:

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 26

    Of course framing is available.

    You don’t understand. You don’t understand what brokerages want. You don’t understand why framing won’t work for them (while of course it’s technically possible to frame). You don’t understand what I’m saying.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  37. David Losh

    RE: Kary L. Krismer @ 36

    You are absolutely correct, what you are saying makes no sense.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  38. Toby Barnett

    RE: David Losh @ 35 – Allowing the public to use the NWMLS is a viable option though I feel the NWMLS may want to stay out of the business as to remain independent or they would resale the leads back to member brokers for their own listings.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

Leave a Reply

Do you want a nifty avatar picture next to your name, instead of a photograph of Tim's dog? Just sign up with Gravatar, and make sure to use the same email address in the form below. It's that easy!

Please read the rules before posting a comment.

You have 5 comments remaining on this post.

Archives

Find us on Google+