Here’s a brand-new home-search tool that will likely change the way you hunt for residential properties in Houston. And you can find it on the website of . . . a real estate agent working out of this Pearland strip center??
Actually, the new search tool is just a branded implementation of Diverse Solutions’ dsSearchAgent, which has been around for a few years in other markets, and received a major makeover late last fall. The same system might be hiding on some other area broker’s website, but this is the first we’ve seen it working with Houston MLS data.
What’s so special about dsSearchAgent?
Sure, the interface looks nifty, and it does gather a lot of information about a property on a single screen. Google Maps and Street View images are integrated into the listings, and so are Walk Scores.
But you’ll likely have the most fun with the search features. The application lets you mine listings for specific data that HAR routinely hides from consumers, like how many days a property’s been on the market, and what price drops have occurred and when. You can set it to show you, for example, only properties whose asking prices have been cut by a certain percentage — within a certain period of time. And it identifies and lets you search for “pre-foreclosures,” using a proprietary algorithm Diverse Solutions claims is more than 99 percent accurate. You can also use dsSearchAgent to search for-sale-by-owner properties listed on Zillow, but that functionality’s been left out of Silver Star Realty’s site.
Is this ready for prime time? ERA agent James Wheelock, who made the video above, reports that the system is still “somewhat in Beta stage and so we have occasional bugs in it.”
- Houston dsSearchAgent [ERA Silver Star Realty]
- James Wheelock’s Random Thoughts [James Wheelock’s Random Thoughts]
- Houston Home Search [YouTube]
- Today Is A Good Day; New IDX Features, Part Uno [Diverse Solutions]
- How It Works [Walk Score]
Photo: Silver Star Realty