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Realtor.com was started in 1995 and is owned and operated by Move, Inc. It is also the official website for the National Association of REALTORS®. The company currently has more than 4 million listings pulled from nearly 800 Multiple Listing Services. Most of these listings get updated every 15 minutes.
Zillow was developed as an online real estate search engine that was incorporated in 2004. It was created by Rich Barton and Lloyd Bring, former Microsoft gurus who were key in the development of the Expedia website. Spencer Rascoff serves as the company CEO.
The company has data on over 110 million homes in the United States, in addition to the 2 million that are currently listed on the website for sale. The site offers value estimates on homes, gives key data on how the price of a home will change over a given timespan, gives aerial views of homes and helps customers find data on similar homes that exist in the same search area. The website accesses basic public data on a home and also gives information on the square footage and number of bedrooms listed in a home. If a home has a recently added feature, such as a renovation, this information is also tracked on the website for the home. Zillow also has API integration and developers can also network Zillow's search feature into websites developed for other realtors.
Zillow has a unique functionality that is not found on many realtor websites. The "Make Me Move" feature is a great way to get a pre-market price on the home out there. One of the nice features of the Zillow website is the rental search feature, which was launched in 2009. The website doesn't list as many rentals as homes, but this helps renters find an affordable website. Zillow is also used to power other key real estate search paradigms, such as AOL Real Estate and MSN Real Estate, in 2013 and 2014 respectively.
Zillow also was one of the first companies in the industry to begin using apps to access its real estate search database. Here is a list of apps available and the dates that they were launched:
For Sale By Owner has been in business since 1999 and is a Tribune owned company. For Sale By Owner empowers buyers and sellers with the resources that they need to make properties change hands directly without having to go through a real estate agent. The site provides how-to guides to empower the new buyer or seller and live customer support. They are widely acknowledged as the top "direct selling" home website in the industry. According to their website, in 2013, customers with For Sale By Owner saved more than $70 million on commissions. For Sale By Owner sold more than $2.3 billion in real estate properties using the tools available through the website. For Sale By Owner also makes it very easy to sell and market your home to potential buyers as well. The website contains easy marketing tools that advertise listings on multiple real estate websites and the Multiple Listing Service. There are listing services, advertising services, and tools that allow a seller to bypass a realtor. The lowest plan for selling a home with For Sale By Owner starts at $99 per month. Sellers may also choose to pay a one time, flat fee listing.
For Sale By Owner has a unique trait that sets it apart from other real estate websites: For Sale By Owner is a Tribune Publishing Company. With this backing, For Sale By Owner is able to provide its clients the best listings possible that are a result of Tribune Publishing's extensive holding of advertising and marketing resources of both online and printed media.
Trulia is an online real estate listing website that started in 2005. Recently, they were bought out by Zillow. The website provides pricing information for homes, which combines listing and public data, showing how the price has changed over time. The home price is also compared with other homes in the same city. On July of 2014, Zillow acquired Trulia for $3.5 billion. The site will remain independent from Zillow, with users and real estate agents having access to the same resources as they did before.
The company's web site provides crime maps, also. The maps are taken from websites such as CrimeReports.com. The maps then generate a map of criminal activity in different urban areas. User can see the crime report information so that they can determine whether or not they might want to purchase a home in a neighborhood.
One of the things about Trulia that is neat is how schools and other local conveniences are listed and are used to generate a transit score and walking score for the home. The information includes critical information on schools near a home, including contact information, grades taught, and whether the school is private or public. Site users can also comment on the neighborhood's safety, pet hospitality, and other demographical information.
Trulia also has several resources on its website for customers to get in contact with a realtor who is connected with a home listing. Real estate agents can submit their listings to Trulia and most listings with Trulia are generated through real estate listings and public listings.
Hubzu is an online real estate company that specializes in setting up prospective homeowners with a potential property. Hubzu was originally known as GoHoming, a company that was founded in 2009. The company changed its branding in 2012. Hubzu works much like eBay or other online auctioning sites. A customer signs up for a free Hubzu account, having free access to many different online listings from coast-to-coast. Hubzu has a very transparent process for bidding. A buyer can place a bid on the home, seeing what other bidders are currently offering. Also, the buyer can make an outright offer on a home using Hubzu's website. If you "win" an auction, the buyer and seller can set a closing date, draft an agreement, and provide the down payment, proof of financial ability to pay for the home if paying cash, or copy of the loan agreement. Afterwards, the buyer can arrange a move-in date after funds for the home have been procured. Hubzu primarily has foreclosed properties on its website. Hubzu also finds townhouses, condominiums, and single-family dwellings available from short sales and independent sellers. Overall, Hubzu offers its services in a platform that is similar to Auction.com.
For Rent focuses their efforts on making the new property search as simple as possible for their customers. Their specific listings (limited to rental properties) allow them to focus on perfecting a part of the real estate market. Customers can easily search for features they want in their future apartment, townhome or condo. Each listing provides the customers with some relevant information that they’ll need to make a decision about their new home. For Rent customers will find a variety of services that will help them learn more about the real estate industry and find their new dream home.
For those customers looking for a new apartment, apartments.com is one of the nation’s leading resources to help them find what they are searching for. They provide comprehensive lists of all the information a renter would need to know about the property they are interested in. This information is presented in a variety of ways to help the customer have a good experience as they look for their new home. Apartments.com is also a great place for professionals to list their properties and find new tenants. Either side of the real estate market (buying or selling) will be taken care of on Apartments.com
Even though Apartment Guide has been around since 1975, then have done their part to stay with the times and offer relevant ways for their customers to conduct their apartment home search. Their customers can search listings at anytime and anywhere with up-to-date information on each one through their mobile apps, as well as social media. As a company, they work to continually innovate to stay relevant in areas where their consumers are spending the most time and energy. Finding a new apartment is quick and easy with Apartment Guides searching process.
With their unique approach to the real estate industry, Redfin has served over 30,000 customers and had over $20 billion is home sales. They wanted to change the way that homes were bought and sold so that it was in favor of everyone involved, not just the agents. Customers work closely with a team of dedicated real estate agents to find the perfect home for their future. The take very seriously the customer’s experience and work hard to make sure it is a positive one, with a 4.2 average customer satisfaction rating, they are generally succeeding in that regard.
Homes.com began over 40 years ago as a marketing company that helped connect real estate agents with people looking to become homeowners. In the 90’s they concentrated their efforts and launched their website. Now they are even more focused on bringing the two parties together through effective advertising solutions. Since they work with all of the different people involved in this industry, (agents, brokers, buyers, etc), they really understand the market and process. This knowledge helps them to make all parties happy in their deals.