Top 9 Real Estate APIs to Develop Great Products

  • Date Published
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In this post, you can find the best real estate APIs along with an explanation on how to deal with MLSs with real estate listing APIs and without them.

The real estate industry changes fast. Tech startups bring innovations to the way consumers buy and sell properties.

As a result, developers tend to create more complicated products in tight time frames. To reach this goal, software engineers use real estate APIs and other powerful tools.

I want to cover the most useful APIs and ways to deal with them in real estate databases.

Why Does Data Matter?

Before moving to our topic, it’s required to mention that much of the article covers the US housing market, but it’s still useful for software developers working on real estate projects from all over the world.

Where Real Estate Data Comes From

The data source is the first thing you should consider before you start developing a product. As any real estate application or website demands certain kinds of information ranging from an available property for sale/rent to neighborhood details.

Where should you get all this information? And the answer depends on how you or your client will distribute the product: locally or worldwide.

However, you can get data as (as Zillow does) from different feed sources like:

  • Listings manually posted by users and marked as ‘For sale by owner’.
  • Listings manually posted by agents.
  • Zillow gets listings directly from an MLS in some cases.

There are some more variants when listings are sent directly to Zillow by:

  • Partners;
  • Brokers;
  • Agents;
  • Third-party ‘feed’ providers (as the company calls them).

What is MLS? This abbreviation stands for Multiple Listing Service. A group of real estate brokers uses it to see each other’s listings of available properties for sale. Brokers benefit from sharing this information as both parties get the commission and essential data.

To integrate an exchange of data between your product and MLS, you should set up the Internet Data Exchange.

There are several ways:

  • It’s possible to use the FTP protocol. However, choosing this variant, you need to transfer complete datasets.
  • The next way is to use the Real Estate Transaction Standard. The primary purpose of this framework is to facilitate the exchange of MLS data.

To reach success, you have to consider a powerful server-side to build a real estate website. Such a solution allows managing data and guarantees stable work.

Top Real Estate APIs for Software Development

There is a list of real estate tools that can solve many tech issues:

  • SimplyRETS
  • Rets Rabbit
  • Zillow
  • Zillow Neighborhood Boundaries
  • Walk Score
  • Google Maps API
  • Yelp Fusion
  • Zillow Mortgages API
  • DataNerds Property API

Let’s discuss them more precisely. We’ve divided APIs into various categories, so it’s easy to navigate through them.

Real Property Information and Listings

These APIs help you get detailed information about available properties. Many top real estate companies (Zillow, The Corcoran Group) have integrated these APIs into their solutions.

  • (Bridge API)

Cost: $50 per month helps the developers access many MLS listings and public records about the available property.

  • SimplyRETS

Cost: $49-199 per month

This API assists in developing mobile applications and websites. SimplyRETS allows using listing and market data from MLS. It’s possible to use SimplyRETS with various programming languages like Python, PHP, and Node.js.

  • Rets Rabbit

Cost: $150-699 per month

Rets Rabbit allows importing images and listings from ListHub or REST. All collected information is stored in the database. As a result, you can connect your website to the REST API and integrate all the required data.

  • Zillow

Cost: free

Zillow is one of the real estate companies that offer many APIs for developers to use.


Cost: free has useful tools for developing real estate apps. There are more than 7,000 real-estate-related data, e.g. demographics, crimes, and others.

Neighborhood and Related Data

There are APIs to deliver neighborhood and related information to your real estate app or website.

  • Zillow Neighborhood Boundaries

Cost: free

Zillow Neighborhood Boundaries is a database with over 17,000 neighborhood boundaries of the most significant American cities. Any developer can use this tool during development.

  • Walk Score

Cost: from free to $100+ per month

Walk Score allows integrated features like local transport details, neighborhoods, and others.

  • Google Maps API

Cost: $200 free monthly credit

This powerful API from Google has already been integrated into various apps and websites. Google Maps API provides localization for approximately 50 languages along with geocoding.

  • Yelp Fusion

Cost: free

Yelp Fusion offers software developers to use various data from approximately 32 countries. As a result, you can provide customers with more detailed data about a particular region.

There is a bunch of cool APIs to use during development. You can choose the right one, depending on the project requirements and business goals.