Realestate.com, the online real estate destination owned by the online mortgage giant LendingTree, rolled out a new sitewide redesign last week.
The new design is clean, fast and eminently usable. And while not as tricked out as some of its competitors, the site is a very capable competitor. Results are returned in a very easy to understand fashion.
Realestate.com is not a pure search play though. Like its online counterparts Redfin and ZipRealty, it also maintains a number of local offices and a “boots on the ground” (call it a “signs in the yards”) brand in a dozen or so states.
In addition to the redesign of its search tool, Realestate.com has also launched a community section on their site, which they’re calling Town Square.
Town Square will bring the worlds of online and in-person real estate together in an interactive social community. By visiting Town Square, consumers can access valuable insight from agents, share their experiences, learn about emerging real estate trends and search an A-to-Z encyclopedia about all-things-real estate. For real estate professionals, Town Square offers an opportunity to connect with interested homebuyers and sellers, network with other agents, share tips and best practices and blog about the latest real estate news and happenings in their area.
Frankly, they’re probably a little late to the party to get Realtors to engage in yet another platform; ActiveRain, Zillow, Trulia, Homegain and Realtor.com all offer blogging platforms.
That said, many of those platforms are already saturated with participants and so for folks looking for a new place to stake a claim, Town Square might very well be virgin territory. Especially if Realestate.com can drive some real traffic to those conversations.