New home selling and buying tools

The Web just keeps coming up with new ways to help make buying or selling a house easier. But the focus has gone from information to conversation; many sites are designed to enable users to freely exchange knowledge and opinions about places to live and homes for sale.

Free MLS listing - Iggys House
Free MLS listing - Iggys House
Iggys House offers a valuable service for owners who want to sell their homes themselves: free access to the multiple listing service (MLS). The MLS is a database of information about on-the-market homes that real estate brokers share. Real estate agents use the MLS to connect buyers with sellers.

Today some 70 percent of all houses are sold through the MLS. In the past few years discount real estate brokers started selling access to MLSs for a flat fee starting at around $300.

According to Joe Fox, founder of Iggys House, some 1.2 million people went the for-sale-by-owner route in 2006. About 800,000 of them were successful. "The new service is a no-brainer for people like that," he says. "It will open you up to more exposure."

He adds that clients have trouble accepting that this Iggy's is a free service. "People love free," he says, "but they keep asking about the catch. There is no catch."

Sellers are free to load up their listings with as much description, data, and photos of the property as they care too, including video tours.

Fox hopes, but does not require, that clients who use the free service will migrate to his other site, BuySide Realty, which acts like a traditional real estate broker except that it rebates 75 percent of its commissions back to buyers at closing.

Free MLS listing

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Market indexes are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer The Dow Jones IndexesSM are proprietary to and distributed by Dow Jones & Company, Inc. and have been licensed for use. All content of the Dow Jones IndexesSM © 2014 is proprietary to Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Chicago Mercantile Association. The market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved. Most stock quote data provided by BATS.