New 'whisper listing' portal launches in New York City

RealAgentz.com is the brainchild of former Keller Williams agent Parish Pradhan and partner Daniella Rinaldo

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RealAgentz.com, a property search portal created by former Keller Williams agent Parish Pradhan and partner Daniella Rinaldo, launched this week as a marketplace for high-end “whisper listings,” including homes that have not been published on local multiple listing services.

While online brokerages like Zillow and Redfin have long featured a section devoted to properties soon coming to the market, RealAgentz.com is unique to New York, where the Real Estate Board of New York has routinely attempted to crack down on the proliferation of the listings.

“There are a few high-profile people who are selling $70 million or $80 million mansions,” Pradhan told The Real Deal, which published a story about the site on Thursday. “But there are also other sellers, in lower price points, who don’t want to be on the market.”

Courtesy of RealAgentz.com

The site charges agents who post listings $1,200 a year ($100 per month). It provides users a steady stream of listings that are on the market, off the market and are going to hit the market in the future. It includes luxury Manhattan condos asking $20 million as well as low-end rentals.

While the portal will always remain free for buyers and renters, agents will only be able to post properties until September free of charge.

Earlier this year, the Real Estate Board of New York, the city’s powerful real estate trade group, proposed new rules in an attempt to curb the listings, which have been proliferating rapidly.

But REBNY retreated from the proposal after several large residential brokerages including Brown Harris Stevens lobbied against the regulations, arguing that high-profile clients, including celebrities, typically shun public listings.

Even though the nature of whisper listings typically requires them to be kept secret, some real estate agents have increasingly started to post properties that have not yet hit the market online to select circles of affluent clients.

At other times, whisper listings that have not sold from word-of-mouth are posted online to a small network of homebuyers.

Pradhan’s idea was to build such a network in New York — he wants to post listings that will soon go on the market while giving homebuyers exclusive access to luxury properties.

“I’m trying to help buyers find their dream home instead of getting into bidding wars and overpaying for properties,” Pradhan told The Real Deal, although multiple homebuyers will still be looking at the same properties.

Email Veronika Bondarenko