The Real Deal New York

StreetEasy to agents: Your firm is out – are you still with us?

After 4 brokerages pull feeds, listings platform reaches out to individual agents
By E.B. Solomont | August 02, 2017 05:40PM

After four of the city’s top residential brokerages pulled their sales and rental listings from StreetEasy Tuesday, the listings Goliath is looking to go around them to make its case to individual agents.

In an email to agents of the firms – Brown Harris Stevens, Compass, Stribling & Associates and Town Residential – StreetEasy told them they owed it to their clients to keep using the platform.

“Your firm is one of only four in the city that have chosen to stop marketing their clients’ listings on our sites,” the email, sent Wednesday and reviewed by The Real Deal, said. “Hundreds of other brokerages continue to broadly market their listings and send us feeds.”

The Zillow-owned portal also said it would, for the first time, give agents the ability to manually post and update their listings on its site. (Previously, all changes were made through brokerages’ automatic feeds.) “Sellers and landlords deserve to have their properties seen by the largest audience of buyers, renters and real estate professionals in New York City,” StreetEasy’s email said.

The firms pulled the plug on their StreetEasy feeds on August 1, after the Real Estate Board of New York began syndicating listings via its residential listing service.

The REBNY RLS, which has been years in the making, was accelerated this spring after StreetEasy rolled out a series of money-making ventures,
including its Premier Agent advertising program and a new $3 daily fee to post rental listings.

So far, some 200 aggregators have signed on to receive their listings from the RLS, with the exception of StreetEasy, which maintained its opposition to the syndication on Wednesday. “If StreetEasy wants to go through RLS, I’ll flip them on in a minute,” Town’s Andrew Heiberger told TRD.

An active listing that’s marked unavailable on StreetEasy

Disabling listing feeds to StreetEasy will not remove the thousands of active listings that currently appear on the site — around 13,620 sale listings and 17,493 rental listings as of late Wednesday afternoon.

That’s presented a conundrum for some agents who refuse to pay StreetEasy’s new $3 fee: Those agents have seen their active listings marked “unavailable,” even if they are still on the market. After the four firms pulled the plug on StreetEasy, at least one firm reported that their IT department had been blocked from modifying a listing on behalf of an agent.

StreetEasy itself is still grappling with how it will handle stale listings. Existing quality control measures flag listings that aren’t touched for 45 days and give the agents the option of updating the listing or having it deactivated. “This policy is still in place and will now roll over to individual agents,” a spokesperson for StreetEasy said.