A few months back, we released a new version of the site that let our customers download listing stats and past sales data to a spreadsheet. Then last Tuesday night, we began to require registration on Redfin’s site before allowing customers to download results from the map. People typically use this data when they’re doing a Comparative Market Analysis or CMA.
We made the change because a few of the MLSs to which we belong have requested that don’t allow indiscriminate access to listing data. As one MLS has already pointed out, this will help protect home-sellers from being snail-mail spammed by movers. It’s a way to balance buyers’ hunger for information with sellers’ privacy.
And no, we’re not complaining about the MLS. As we observed this week in the New York Times, MLSs are getting more and more Internet-friendly all the time. We know how hard it is for them to set up rules that all the brokers can abide by when sharing their data, and we like belonging to the MLS. Being able to show all the homes for sale is much better for us than trying to build our own partial database, which is what the non-brokers have to do.
Here’s an example of the data you can download once you’re logged in:
Several Redfin users have noticed the change. One asked us the question:
I can’t seem to see/find the download button when pulling data for homes that have sold, to build comparisons.
What am I missing?
ZK, you’re not missing anything, but now you need to register and log in to see the data. If you register, we won’t spam you, sell or rent your email address, or otherwise do nefarious things. And of course you get to use all kinds of cool site features like email updates on your search, RSS feeds, and the ability to tell the difference between homes for which you’ve viewed details (lighter colors) and those for which you haven’t (darker).
We think registration for download is a good thing: serious buyers still get the data that helps them make a sound offer, as well as other benefits. And sellers don’t get spammed.