Is this a move to make their website friendlier to other agents working under other brokers, or a first get tough Compass swipe at Zillow?

Inman reports that last week, without fanfare, Compass made “a big change to the way it displays listings on its consumer-facing website. Every non-Compass listing now shows the listing agent and contact information for the listing agent, making Compass’ site aesthetically more similar to Zillow or realtor.com than a brokerage website.” (See example from a McKinney listing above.)

And how generous is this: Compass has even included a form for agents to fill out to contact the listing agent through MLS. To be clear, it’s the agent from a rival brokerage. And to be fair, Ebby Halliday  has always listed the competing agent and broker on the company’s most popular site, though not as boldly.

“We are now showing the true listing agent on every listing on our website, even when they are not Compass agents, ” Compass CEO Robert Reffkin said, in a statement. “We hope other brokerages will appreciate the transparency and trust of always showing their listing agents.”

If a buyer is already working with a Compass agent, and the Compass agent sends the buyer a listing within the Compass system, the listing agent’s contact info will not be provided, since it won’t be needed.

“We are going to provide transparency to the consumer,” says Erik T. Bahr, General Manager, Dallas & Fort Worth Real Estate, Compass. “The aggregators get MLS content very quickly, and they do a good job of getting it to the consumer. The challenge is there is often consumer confusion as to who to contact about the listing.”

This process has put agents in a tough spot: Realtors procure a listing, prepare the home with the seller, take photos, then all their work is displayed on the popular website, but the listing agent doesn’t necessarily get credit for it. Rather, it is often an agent who has paid the most for an advertisement.

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home search tools

Decades ago, home buyers combed the Sunday newspaper to find houses for sale. They hopped in their car for a “Sunday drive” around neighborhoods they liked, keeping their eyes peeled for For Sale signs or better yet, an open house.

Today, buyers use web searches and mobile apps to search hundreds of thousands of properties for sale. They can zero in on neighborhoods they like to find potential listings and “walk inside” home with virtual tours that give buyers almost a first-hand feel of what the listing is like. (more…)

doorstepsswipe_summary

You know, searching for the right home is a lot like looking for Mr./Mrs. Right these days. You’re browsing through listings on the web, looking for that one profile and photo that really clicks. But what if you just happen to be in a neighborhood you love and want to see what’s on the market nearby? Just like groundbreaking GPS dating app Tinder, Move.com’s Doorsteps Swipe app helps you connect with the right property using GPS and real estate data from Realtor.com.

“Doorsteps Swipe was created to get soon-to-be first-time buyers comfortable with the process of searching for a home and help them discover what they truly want through a simple, entertaining and easy interface,” said Doorsteps founder Michele Serro. “This type of instantaneousness in mobile can help eliminate the endless search for a home with the perfect profile. The online home search for someone very early in their search is more fun when there’s a whole lot less to decide. The homes each user collects might not necessarily represent the homes they will actually buy, but rather the ones that will help them make the best decision for tomorrow.”