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

Getting answers

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Most stock quote data provided by BATS. Market indices 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.

Factset: FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved.

Chicago Mercantile Association: Certain market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved.

Dow Jones: The Dow Jones branded indices are proprietary to and are calculated, distributed and marketed by DJI Opco, a subsidiary of S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC and have been licensed for use to S&P Opco, LLC and CNN. Standard & Poor's and S&P are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor’s Financial Services LLC and Dow Jones is a registered trademark of Dow Jones Trademark Holdings LLC. All content of the Dow Jones branded indices © S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC 2014 and/or its affiliates.