Realtors in New York City are so fed up with the area’s Zillow-owned incumbent portal StreetEasy that they have banded together to start their own one. OneKey is the product of a group of realtors who came together in 2018 to create their own merged MLS. The portal already claims to have over 40,000 listings across the city and surrounding area, over 24,000 of which are sale listings whereas StreetEasy’s figure is around 15,000. While OneKey may have more listings overall, StreetEasy is said to still dominate in terms of prime Manhattan coverage with well over 6,000 sale listings.
In 2017 the Zillow backed portal launched Premier Agent its highly controversial agent advertising program and tensions with realtors have been simmering ever since. As we reported yesterday, eminent realtor firm Douglas Elliman has just come to an agreement with the portal after sustained complaints around StreetEasy’s insistence on the manual entry of listings. As such the announcement of an agent lead rival portal comes as no great surprise.
OneKey is looking to distinguish itself by providing its users with rich data around neighbourhoods and historical transactions of nearby properties. According to the Chairperson of OneKey’s board of managers, the portal’s users will also “never be offered pay-to-play agents”.
As headlines stack up around workers fleeing crowded and expensive cities like New York and agency dissatisfaction with monolithic portal giants spreads, it will be interesting to see whether more agencies around the world band together and go down the OnTheMarket / OneKey route.