A catch-22 for real estate tech companies has been easy, free access real estate MLS data to develop web or mobile apps. MLSs usually require you to be working with a brokerage/agent customer before giving you access to real estate data. But it’s really hard to get brokerages / agents to sign on as customers if you don’t have an working app!
Thanks to a new partnership between the Austin Board of REALTORS, RESO, and CoreLogic, software developers can get a FREE access to a RETS server (called the Developer Reference Server) to develop and test their applications with actual real estate data.
ListHub is probably the closest thing to getting nationwide MLS listings at 1.4 million listings. The bad new is ListHub doesn’t use a Web API, instead the national feed is a 14GB XML file. This presets some pretty big challenges if you’re trying to import listings. Fortunately I’m going to give you a high level overview how we do things at Rets Rabbit to give our ListHub customers a Web API.
When most real estate agents think of IDX, frustration and pain come to mind.
In talking with Rets Rabbit customers, we’ve encountered all of the common complaints about IDX: confusing interfaces stuck in the mid-90s, lack of mobile device support, incorrect or missing information, terrible support, limited customization options and social media integration.
Is it any wonder that buyers are fleeing to portals such as Zillow or Realtor.com and that agents are considering doing without IDX all together?
Despite over 50% of buyers use a mobile website or application in their home search, a shocking amount of realtors have not optimized their websites for mobile.
3 seconds . . .
That’s how long you have before a significant number of web users leave your site, over 40% according to KissMetrics. Unfortunately a lot of realtor websites take much longer to load. In a recent spot check of 15 top-producing and well known agents in Columbus, OH I found 10 that loaded over 3 seconds, one took as long as 20 seconds!
The good news with the use of some free tools and a little know-how, most performance issues with a realtor’s website can be fixed without a lot of time or money. I’m going to go over a few tools and steps I use with my real estate agent websites.
Running a real estate API company I’ll often get this common question/request from eager real estate technology startups about a National MLS.
“Hi we’re trying to create a real estate portal, how can we get access to all of the listings in the United States. Can your API provide us with this data?”
If you’re not familiar with the real estate industry in the United States, it doesn’t sound like an unreasonable request. In 2016 there HAS to be a way to get all of the listings from a single source right? So does a national MLS exist?
A couple of months ago I ran into this request from Ryan Delk on Twitter:
After a quick search I was able to find a real estate API matching his needs. It gave me an idea though, there are a lot of APIs for real estate data if you know where to look. So to make it easy I started a list of real estate APIs and broken them down by category.
Getting a data feed for real estate listings can be challenging if you’re new to real estate technology and how MLSes handle data access. Knowing what to expect and what questions to ask can help save you a lot of time and help get your project started sooner.
This year will be seen at as a watershed moment for real estate technology, after years of fragmentation across MLSs the industry is finally embracing two key standards which will improve the way technology companies consume real estate data. The two standards from the Real Estate Standards Organization (RESO) are called Data Dictionary and the RESO Web API. These two standards will impact every company and technology in the industry, including our real estate API product Rets Rabbit.
In this article I’m going to explain what Data Dictionary and the RESO Web API standard are, why they matter, and why Rets Rabbit is integrating both standards into our product.
Since I debuted Rets Rabbit I’ve gotten quite a few requests for a Rets Rabbit plugin to integrate real estate listings in Craft CMS. It’s always been on the roadmap, however a full featured plugin is a lot of work and I’ve always had to push it back.
Fortunately I recently discovered the OAuth & REST plugins from Dukt. Having a long Memorial Day weekend ahead of me I decided to take a crack and see how much of the Rets Rabbit functionality I could implement.