What you need to know about Internet Data Exchange (IDX) when searching homes for sale online

Understanding Your Access to Real Estate Listings using Internet Data Exchange (IDX)

We’d like to clarify with our website visitors that we use Internet Data Exchange (IDX) on our website DreamWellHomes.com.

What is an IDX?

Internet Data Exchange (IDX) is known as Broker Reciprocity which allow listings from the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) database (that we and many agents participate in) to be displayed publicly on our real estate websites.

Anytime you see properties on a website that came from an MLS whether through our website or another agent’s or real estate broker’s website, it is likely made possible through IDX. Each real estate agent or broker chooses an IDX provider/ company that they like to work with.

The common misperception is that we are the listing agents for many of the properties listed on this website.

We do NOT own the listings on this website.

They are owned by various real estate brokers who cooperate and syndicate their real estate listings through IDX.

Cooperation among various real estate broker’s to publish each other’s listings on their own websites

Most real estate agents and brokers use IDX to display each other’s MLS listings or home search tools on their website (for example For Sale homes), or comparative market analysis tool for Sold homes (to see price trends/ how homes are currently selling higher/lower in a neighborhood).

For each IDX listings page that we have, our IDX company provider automatically shows both For Sale homes (located on on the bottom left side – Listing status shows Active), and comparable sold homes (located on the bottom right side – Listing status shows Sold) to show market history to educate our real estate website visitors with home price trends.

Pay Attention to Listing Status and Have your Buyer’s Agent Verify (if you are already working with an agent)

A quick way to get disheartened is to find that the house you just fell in love after hours (or even months) of browsing is already sold.

We recommend that you to pay attention to the listing status – whether:

  1. Active (For Sale)
  2. Contingent (Offer accepted contingent to approval from a short sale lender/ or any other contingent reason)
  3. Pending (Seller has accepted an offer and home is in escrow)
  4. Sold

Just to be really accurate, if you are represented by a buyer’s agent, he or she will check with the listing agent/broker to be sure that the house you are interested in is still available. And of course the buyer’s agent may attempt to find out any juicy (if available!) or just pertinent details available on that property on your behalf.

Know that we sometimes see a delay in the listing agent updating the status of a listing from Active to Pending or Contingent. The robots have not taken care of this task yet!  When a seller accepts a buyer’s offer and they get into a legally binding contract, the listing agent must reflect the change of listing status on the MLS in a reasonable time. In this case, they may communicate with your agent if the sellers are open for any back-up offers or if their current deal is not looking solid. From experience, having a persistent buyer’s agent works really well in situations like this.

Who owns the listing?

On our website, the name of the real estate broker who owns the listing is shown at the bottom of each IDX listing page.

You are welcome to search for their contact information if you would rather contact or ask questions directly from the listing agent or listing broker who is hired and paid by the home seller.

Many who are interested in additional information and photos of a listing should contact the listing real estate brokers of the homes that they are interested in.

Limitations of using websites using an IDX

Using an IDX website is great as it allows you to access so many listings online. It also has its limits as it will not show real estate listings wherein the homeowners and their listing agents have agreed in writing NOT to syndicate their homes for IDX publishing.

There are a few listings like this.

In this case, you will not see the home in a specific neighborhood that you are looking for using our IDX website or another real estate company’s IDX website.

However, real estate agents like us may still see these homes for sale using their MLS access if the listings are published on the MLS.

You may see these homes for sale from a real estate agent when the home sellers and their listing agents agree to publish their home for sale on the MLS.

To be notified automatically of new listings, you may want to sign up to get MLS property alerts by email directly from the real estate agent you are working with.

Communication is key. You will need to be very specific on the criteria that you and your agent set up.  Share a thoughtful email or text of what you are looking for with your agent or have a meaningful conversation in person or by phone.

It is not enough to tell an agent a price range, location, and timeframe. Anyone can search online with these criteria.

Go beyond the typical buyer revelation.

Dig a little deeper, understand what will truly make you happy in your real estate decision, and share with the agent you trust – you will see better results. Be candid about your financial and credit capacity. These issues will surface at some point – better to find out sooner than later.

Fine-tuning your search using the MLS

You and your agent could initially set up an extra wide search (see lots of listings) or a very limited search (see few listings) on the MLS – your choice. This is not set in stone and can be changed at any time.

Some homes are not easy to find

It is little known that there are some home sellers and some real estate agents who neither publish their home for sale listing on the MLS nor syndicate through the IDX. They might simply put a for sale sign in front of the home (or not) – so, driving by the neighborhood in person, or having a real estate agent watch a specific neighborhood (perhaps make inquiries from neighbors or invest in a direct mail marketing) for you might still be helpful in this online world.

The internet is great, just know that it does not always provide a full, always accurate, and comprehensive picture. But of course, you already know this. Doing business with a trustworthy company is important in the world we now live in.

Transparency is immensely important

Anytime, you fill out a contact form on our website, send an email, or leave a voicemail, know that your message and contact information will be shared with a real estate agent that we refer you to who will directly respond to your inquiry.

You are welcome to browse our website anonymously and for free

We understand that some of you prefer not to be contacted by a real estate agent at all. So we definitely welcome you to use our website anonymously and we hope that you will find DreamWellHomes.com to be useful and come back time and time again.

Thanks for visiting DreamWellHomes.com.

Care to share what’s on your mind?

We’d love hear your feedback here if you strongly feel that there is a better way that we can help you. We would always, always care to be aware and be a better service provider.

Contact Us

If you have any questions, please contact us by filling out a contact form here.

Thank you kindly.