Redfin Helps Home Shoppers

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Redfin has released a minor update to its web site today, adding ‘Fixer Upper’ as a search criteria to its real estate search engine. When you check off that box, the site scours all the active listing descriptions for key words like “sweat equity” or “fixer” and then displays the results accordingly. See an example of a fixer listing.

I like this feature a lot. It moves search beyond the simple physical criteria layed out by the MLS (beds, baths etc.) and into slightly more abstract territory, but in the process makes it much more buyer-friendly – especially for first-time homeowners. I could definitely see myself using this feature (if only they were live in Oregon…).

Also in this update, looks like Redfin has gotten into bed with its Puget Sound neighbor Zillow and incorporated Zestimates to all of its property listings. I’m not entirely sold on how much value this really adds to a listing however. I imagine most home buyers are interested in what Zillow thinks the home’s current estimated value is. But, beyond simple curiousity, I’m not sure how much it helps the buying decision. But I suppose this is more testament to the subjective nature of Zillow’s data, rather than Redfin’s implementation of its API.

All in all, a nice bump to Redfin’s feature set that should make most users pretty happy.

More from John Cook: Redfin links up with Zillow, helps find fixer-uppers

UPDATE:  ZipRealty also adds Zillow Zestimates