Technology

MLS taps Point2 to breathe new life into public-facing site

Corpus Christi Association of Realtors' search portal generates leads for members

The Corpus Christi Association of Realtors, which serves more than 1,000 members on Texas’ Gulf Coast, has become the latest Realtor group to launch a public-facing website powered by software provider Point2.

Corpus Christi joins other local Realtor organizations that have adopted Point2’s platform in an effort to claim some of the traffic going to listing portals and generate leads for members — some of whom are paying big bucks to the likes of Zillow, Trulia and realtor.com for online prospects.

“Consumers now have access to the freshest real estate data coming directly from the Coastal Bend MLS, updated multiple times each day,” said Linda Moola, director of sales, syndication and MLS and association services at Point2, in a statement.

The Corpus Christi Association of Realtors, which owns and operates the Coastal Bend MLS,  “is helping their membership by directing all leads captured by their consumer portal directly back to their agents at no cost,” she said. The MLS also facilitates the syndication of listings to Zillow, Trulia, realtor.com, Homes.com and a local newspaper, the Corpus Christi Caller-Times.

Point2’s listing search platform has steadily gained traction ever since the company launched the product last year, shortly after NAR gave Realtor associations and MLSs more leeway to charge members for providing public-facing websites as a “basic service.”

In announcing the “white label” version of the listing search platform that powers real estate portals Point2Homes and PropertyShark, Point2 said its public-facing MLS websites would be a “revenue-generating resource” that does not rely on Realtor association or MLS dues.

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The Corpus Christi association’s new website, coastalbendlifestyle.com, replaces what the group’s CEO, Warren W. Andrich, called an “outdated version” that was “not relevant” to members and consumers any longer.

The website’s for-sale and rental listings will serve up comprehensive property descriptions and some demographic data. Users can access richer demographic data, as well as crime statistics, by visiting the site’s neighborhood pages.

Screenshot showing CCAR's new consumer listing search tool

Screen shot showing CCAR’s new consumer listing search tool

They can also see school district and flood-hazard boundaries by activating overlays on the site’s neighborhood maps, and easily contact agents, schedule showings and share listings on social media.

The site also integrates information about down payment assistance programs with listing data, displaying an icon next to listings that may qualify for one or more homeownership programs. The tool, powered by Down Payment Resource, is aimed at helping buyers and real estate agents identify suitable properties more quickly.