Less than 24 hours after Zillow announced it had agreed to acquire ShowingTime for $500 million, CoStar-owned Homesnap announced it was putting the “pedal to the metal” on developing its own tool to help real estate agents schedule showings.
The maker of agent tools — and also the operator of a rival listings portal — revealed the development plans to its multiple listing service partners. It comes as many agents are expressing concern over Zillow’s acquisition.
“At Homesnap, we believe that the essential tools real estate professionals use every day to serve clients should not be owned or controlled by market participants who compete with those real estate professionals,” Homesnap CEO John Mazur said in a statement.
Homesnap is owned by CoStar, a real estate data and software company behind platforms like Apartments.com and auction.com. CoStar has revealed its intentions to launch its own residential search platform, but it remains unclear what that platform will eventually look like.
CoStar CEO Andy Florance has been explicit that his business model will not mirror that of Zillow’s, even going as far as saying that the “residential agent is Zillow’s competitor.”
The data they enter isn’t viewable or accessible by any other party and is used for the purpose of appointment scheduling, Samuelson told Inman.
Nonetheless, Mazur echoed many of the same concerns expressed by agents.
“Agents must be able to collaborate with their buyers and sellers without fear that their clients’ information is being shared with a competing brokerage,” Mazur wrote. “Similarly, brokerages must have confidence that the tools their agents use don’t provide confidential information to a competitor who may make offers on their listings, or list the house down the street.”
This new showing scheduling tool, which Homesnap has dubbed “Homesnap Showings” is set to debut this year. In the letter, Mazur said the tool was already in development, but following Zillow’s announcement, it decided to accelerate the announcement that Homesnap had a similar tool in development.
“Our development team is putting the pedal to the metal so this feature will be available to every Homesnap Pro user as soon as possible,” Mazur said.
The new showing scheduling tool will join a suit other tools, which includes, a recently launched artificial intelligence-powered tool that the company believes can predict how quickly a home will sell at various price points. In February, Homesnap launched a revamped version of its Homesnap Pro app. The company has also launched new lead generation tools and a future commission-based payment service in 2020.