Dwellicious Tackles Search Site Overload

Dwellicious is a social bookmarking site geared exclusively towards real estate. In the mold of Digg and its namesake Delicious, it’s a pretty simple idea… Save all your properties from all over the web to one location and share them with others, including the agent you’re working with.

The company launched at Real Estate Connect in New York where I had a chance to speak with founder Greg Robertson about why he decided to create the service (see Saving Properties One Click at a Time).

I like the site a lot, having had the opportunity to really use it over the last couple of weeks. First, compliments on the UI and design. The site looks great and is very usable and snappy. Adding homes was a breeze. Like the 1000Watt guys I loved having a “Meta Bucket”.

But the magic for me was ultimately not in the ability to sort and save properties I was looking at, but rather all the additional information Dwellicious is able to wrap around the homes themselves.

Click on the Cool Tools button on any saved property to see what I’m talking about. Try for yourself on some of the sample properties I’ve saved in my bookmarks on Dwellicious.

Important contextual data points like Walk Score and neighborhood amenities are revealed (see Lifestyle search is the new black) — information that is many times lacking on the originating listing source.

This feature, while its greatest strength, is also its greatest weakness however.

Since Dwellicious has grown in response to the patchwork of competing national search experiences, the need for a big bucket is largely rendered moot if there is a local broker’s IDX-driven web site or MLS web site (see MRIS Takes on the Search Sites) that that has half a clue about delivering a great search experience. Redfin is a good example. Using Redfin’s site to search for homes in any of its service areas and I get 100% of the local listings and a fantastic, deep feature set that approximates most of what Dwellicious has to offer.

There’s no need to go anywhere else.

The good news (for Dwellicious anyway), is that those sites who actually have a clue are few and far between.

Finally, I also fear Dwellicious may be a tad advanced for the average Internet user, since the entire premise is predicated on the use of a Bookmarklet in your browser bar. That seems to me to be the service’s Achilles heel. A simple idea on the surface, but a lot harder to get people to use in practice.

I hope then that Dwellicious attempts to work with the search sites to integrate links or icons into the listing pages themselves. If they can do this, it will bypass the need for a Bookmarklet and greatly speed up adoption rates.

Dwellicious expects to monetize the service by charging agents and brokers for a Dwellicious Pro account in which they can sign up every buyer they are working for and be able to collaborate with and review all their search activity.

If it fits your buyers’ behavior – it may be worth taking a look.