All Real Estate sites have the same listings – True or False?

Spring Texas homes for saleFALSE.  All real estate sites DO NOT have the same listings.  In addition to real estate sites missing active home listings, their listing data contains OUTDATED PRICES and homes no longer on the market.

Say it isn’t so Batman. Well, I am not batman but it is the TRUTH.  A recent survey performed by WAV Group for identified the inaccuracies in listing data between various real estate sites. In the sample of missing listings in Dallas, Zillow was missing 64% of the listings, Yahoo was missing 54%, Trulia was missing 46%, and Google was missing 31% of the real estate listings. If you are looking for a home, that’s a lot of homes that you are not getting an opportunity to choose from.

Why are the real estate sites missing listings?  The missing listings and inaccurate prices has to do with the source of the real estate sites listings. The most accurate source of real estate listings and prices is through the LOCAL MLS.

The above mentioned sites DO NOT receive a direct feed from the LOCAL MLS. Thus causing the major real estate sites to compile listings from numerous sources including advertising publications, agents, and direct feeds from brokers.  Since the major real estate sites do not have direct feeds from ALL brokers nor the listings from ALL agents, its inevitable that they are going to be missing listings. 

The cause of inaccurate listing prices is due to some of the same factors. The advertising publications are not notified of listing price changes and in turn the real estate sites are not notified.  We, real estate agents are just as guilty. We adjust a price in our local MLS but don’t take the time to adjust the price at ALL the real estate sites where we have posted our listings.

So if you are a Spring Texas home buyer looking for the most complete and accurate source of listing data where do you go?  Search for homes on real estate sites that receive a direct feed from the local MLS.  These sites include our real estate site, broker sites, and the consumer site of our local (Houston Association of Realtors).  All are powered by the local MLS which is the most reliable source of listing data.