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AOL Real Estate Fets a Facelift Web Portal Launches New Real Estate Section

October 4, 2007


Inman News

AOL has overhauled its real estate section and re-launched a new site in beta at http://realestate.aol.com/.

The new site aims to place property search front and center, while offering consumers a broad view of the market, company officials said.

AOL Real Estate is one of the top-visited real estate sites, with an average 3.5 million unique visitors each month over the last six months, according to comScore Media Metrix data.

At the new site, AOL has combined various types of for-sale and rental property listings into one search box, has added school and neighborhood information in snapshot form that shows up alongside search results, and has beefed up core tools like mortgage calculators and market data.

The company also revamped its home-valuation center through a new partnership with Fidelity National Real Estate Solutions' Cyberhomes, which also will be providing property listings to the new AOL site. Fidelity in July announced the partnership, which puts an end to AOL's longstanding exclusive listings content relationship with Realtor.com.

AOL also has partnerships with Apartments.com and BargainNetwork, for example, to provide rental listings, foreclosure listings and properties that are for sale by owner, said Rudi Thun, director of AOL Real Estate and Autos. The new AOL Real Estate site had about 1 million property listings in the initial re-launch this week, he said.

Consumers browsing through listings at the AOL real estate center can contact agents either via direct links to the agent's contact information or by submitting information that would enable the agent to contact them. The company plans to add a find-a-Realtor section later, according to Thun.

AOL Real Estate visitors are in various categories and stages of home buying, including first-time buyers, repeat buyers, investors and baby boomers, said Emily Becher, VP of AOL Marketplace.

Source: AOL



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