A study underwritten by Redfin has found that local broker sites such as Windermere.com, Redfin.com, and LongandFoster.com have about 20+% more agent-listed properties than two national portals, Zillow and Trulia.
The results of the study, which were conducted by a real estate consulting firm, the WAV Group, looked at a sample of nearly 6,500 home listings in over 30 ZIP codes from 11 metropolitan areas in the U.S. and it found that Redfin, Long & Foster and Windermere all had 100 percent of the agent-listed homes for sale, while Trulia had 81 percent and Zillow had 79 percent.
The study found that broker sites display new listings 7 to 9 days faster, and that broker sites record sales faster as well: almost 2 out of the 5 listings on Zillow and Trulia are actually no longer for sale, a problem with only 1 in 1,000 of the active listings on Redfin.
Redfin's blog posed the question: "How much does this matter?" and concluded, "Well, it’s hard to wait a week to see new listings when one in four is now under contract within 14 days of its debut. You can’t afford to miss 20% of the listings when the number of homes for sale is already down 29% since last year."
Other results indicate that Trulia and Zillow post information which can be out-of-date, including listings which are no longer on the market, but are still found on the sites. According to the study, a whopping 36 percent of property listings on the property portal sites appear as 'active', when in fact they are not..
Zillow and Trulia do not argue that their listings may have some inaccuracies, though they dispute some of the particulars of the Redfin study; they don’t have everything their rivals have, because neither of them belongs to the local MLSes, which provide the most complete sets of agent-listed properties.
"Many consumers may not care whether a broker – or a portal that acts as a marketing channel for real estate agents — offers the best listing search," said Redfin in the blog. "But you should. Offering our own search has let Redfin as a broker meet customers directly, focusing our agents on service not sales, and saving consumers nearly $100 million in fees over the past five years. If you really can see for yourself all the homes for sale, more should change than just the traffic ranking for real estate websites. And it will."