Redfin Can't Get my Full Scouting Report Right. So I'll Give it to You Here.

By
Real Estate Broker/Owner with J. Philip Faranda (J. Philip R.E. LLC) Westchester County NY License # 49FA1074963

Glenn Kelman TweetRedfin is now offering scouting reports ("Complete performance metrics") on 1 million real estate agents! This is causing quite a kerfuffle in the real estate world, but I have to say that I don't mind my numbers being published by Redfin or anyone else. 

That is, so long as they are accurate. If you click on my scouting report, it is missing over 90% of my data, and a curious regular guy who searches for me will not find a top-10 producer in Westchester, but rather two lonely transactions in Queens and Nassau county. They'll also see a banner ad for two Redfin agents, with curiously higher sales figures right next to their names, and a statement on the bottom of the page that says the following: 

Redfin Fine Print

So, a regular guy will conclude that my transactions for the MLS of Long Island (MLSLI) and my local Empire Access MLS (EAMLS, highlighted) are included, and that I have sold 2 houses in the last 12 months. That sure makes the Redfin agents in the banner ad look far better than I look. 

NOW...IF that regular guy were to log in to Redfin (I am not sure how many people register and log in every time), he'd see another disclaimer saying the following: 

This scouting report is missing some data.

Redfin does not have sold property information from all the MLSs covering the area. As a result, this scouting report may be missing transactions done by this agent in Putnam, Queens and Westchester counties.

IF you log in, you'll see that. If you don't, you'll conclude from the first disclaimer that the statistics have my EAMLS sales. It does not. 

So, I'll publish my EAMLS data right here, with my sales and rental statistics for the last 12 months. Here it is:

J Philip Faranda EAMLS sales report

That paints a different picture, doesn't it? I think that's more than two sales. My broker code is JPHILI. My agent ID is 15689. Even this data is not complete, as several of the transactions only credit me with 50% of the dollar volume because I co-listed or co-sold the property with one of my company's agents. For example, on the last transaction, 28 Waterview Drive, the actual sale price was $741,000. EAMLS credits me with half the dollar volume because Leslie Miller was my co-listing agent.  On 178 North Regent a few rows up, the sale was actually $375,000, and I co-sold the house with Stephanie Solano, also known as agent 26482.

This also does not include sales I made that were not on EAMLS that I sold in other MLS systems. If you were to account for the full dollar volume and deals outside the EAMLS, the dollar volume is probably closer to $15,000,000 and another half dozen transactions. I am no stranger to high dollar, 7 figure transactions, and I proudly broker rentals. I am all about putting a roof over your head regardless of your checking account balance. So are my 20+ agents. 

On at least 4 transactions, I am both the listing and selling/renting agent, but in none of those deals was I a dual agent, as Redfin's metrics would claim. This is important to clarify. Redfin doesn't have access to my confidential files, and even though they say they can report deals where I was supposedly a dual agent, they can't unless they saw my files and signed agency disclosures. They have not. 

If Redfin wants to publish my data, I have no issue with that whatsoever. Like they like to say all the time, I am all for transparency. However, if they are going to publish the data, they ought to get it right, and it might even be wise to hold off on ill-advised tweets like CEO Glenn Kelman's "Live by the sword, die by the sword" line from September 29 until they can publish credible data. That goes for dual agency as well. I have met Glenn and like him, but he's wrong here. 

So there you have it. Redfin says they have my data, but they don't. But I'll give it to you anyway, because I have nothing to hide, and I stand by my numbers. 

 

Comments (47)

Sharon Alters
Coldwell Banker Vanguard Realty - 904-673-2308 - Fleming Island, FL
Realtor - Homes for Sale Fleming Island FL

You, sir, have nad an excellent year so far. Congratulations! Redfin is not in our market, but it will be eventually. Agents won't be able to puff when talking about what a great year they have had when this information is accurate and published. More than once I have found out that agents lied when talking to my broker who has access to our MLS (and these agents work this MLS; it's not the case of only a couple of deals here and most of their business elsewhere).

Sharon

Oct 04, 2011 04:26 PM
Kasey & John Boles
Jon Gosche Real Estate, LLC - BoiseMeridianRealEstate.com - Boise, ID
Boise & Meridian, ID Ada/Canyon/Gem/Boise Counties

I love your transparency and I completely agree with you - I also agree with the quote at the beginning of the blog, but I too agree there is really know way for them to have accurate information. -Kasey

Oct 04, 2011 06:25 PM
Stephen Howell
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Annapolis, MD
Annapolis MD Homes For Sale 443-994-8043

Excellent ... bold move ... Redfin must get the data right or not publish it at all.  Most consumers will not understand the disclaimers and research farther.  Whether you have completed only 1 transaction or 100's, don't we have an obligation to the public to present fair and honest information when it comes to real estate?  I think so.  Publishing less than the FULL picture fails to present a true picture.

Oct 05, 2011 12:05 AM
Reba Haas
Team Reba of RE/MAX Metro Eastside www.TeamReba.com - Bellevue, WA
Team Reba, CDPE

I think it will take some time before they can get it right. Plus they keep getting roadblocks put in their way by some MLS organizations refusing to allow them certain data for this purpose. I'm curious about their tactic to try and get partners this way and to also get people on their site to use their services. A few years ago I was at a technology event for real estate agents and mortgage people and one of the Redfin guys I know confessed that over 90% of the people who come to their site don't use them as a real estate firm when they buy or sell.

Interesting, no?

Oct 05, 2011 06:12 AM
Phyllis Lerner call 914.438.7556
Corcoran Legends Realty - Tarrytown, NY
Corcoran Legends Realty

Hi Phil...

very nice blog as to the validity of Redfin's agent scouting data... sadly most of these sites such as Redfin, Trulia, Zillow and some others that make "home valuation claims" of some sorts, or want to "rate agents" are unable to get it right... simply because they do not have access to all of the data to do it right... or their data collected is tainted in some way or form... they can not even come close to reality in almost all cases...  all it does is distorting local market trends, agents reputation and housing costs... as a matter of fact they weren't able to show not even one of the 21 deals I closed in 2011... according to their scouting data on me I am a non-producing agent... which is far from the truth as it is in your case...

lesson to be learned:

if you want the TRUE picture contact your LOCAL real estate agent and just ask for their stats and that of the local housing market... they'll  happily give it to you... period

ALSO... Redfin has pulled access for it's Agent SCOUTING report for the public... because of the problems they encountered and the outcry it generated...

 

Oct 05, 2011 07:04 AM
Jack O'Neal
HomeSmart Elite Group - Gilbert, AZ

Interesting this could create some real problems for agents that are not aware of this

Oct 05, 2011 07:23 AM
Ron T. Weems Jr.
Weems Property Group | KW North Sound - Bothell, WA
Managing the details one home at a time.

J.

They still have to compete against other realtors. If you know what they are doing, you can prepare youself to answer any questions that a prospective client can come up with during your consultation with them. We will beat them by just being prepared.

Oct 05, 2011 07:58 AM
Aaron Seekford
Arlington Realty, Inc. - Arlington, VA
Ranked Top 1% Nationwide 703-836-6116

Sounds like a lot of people are complaining about this. Time to do some investigating myself...

Oct 05, 2011 08:15 AM
Cynthia Larsen
Cotati, CA
Independent Broker In Sonoma County, CA

Ding dong the witch is dead ... that's my take on it. It is just a matter of time until tailspin rears their ugly head again.

Oct 05, 2011 08:30 AM
Damon Botticelli
Silver State Realty & Investments - Las Vegas, NV
Realtor - Las Vegas Real Estate
 

Wow! did you do this?

 

Scouting Report Data No Longer Available


Dear Customers,

Redfin is suspending access to Scouting Report, the online tool that publishes deal histories and performance metrics for agents across the United States. We will continue to show this information for our own agents.

Our primary reason for excluding other agents is that the data we exposed has too many inaccuracies, mostly because agents work informally in teams, or don't formally record who represented a buyer in a deal. You can read more about the decision on our blog.

We apologize to consumers and agents alike for discontinuing the service, and hope to restore it in the coming months.

Glenn Kelman, CEO, Redfin
Tuesday, October 4, 3 p.m. PDT

____________________________________________________________

 

Not sure I like their lame excuse for why "the data we exposed has too many inaccuracies".

Oct 05, 2011 10:08 AM
Tamara Inzunza
Realty One Group Capital - Alexandria, VA
Close-In Alexandria and Arlington Living

Just amazed at the how many feathers Redfin has ruffled.  Now, if there was a blog post that showed exactly what our politicians have accomplished.  Oh wait, that's another time and place.

Oct 05, 2011 04:05 PM
Lana Robbins Realtor ® Licensed Real Estate Broker
Aloha Kai Real Estate - Clearwater, FL
Licensed in Florida, Washington, and Hawai'i

Hi J. Phillip. They're not in my area yet but it does not surprise me that they are walking that fine line. That is they are setting themselves up for another fine.

Oct 05, 2011 08:05 PM
Cheryl Ritchie
RE/MAX Leading Edge www.GoldenResults.com - Huntingtown, MD
Southern Maryland 301-980-7566
Good post and no surprise at all that this info was taken down almost as fast as it was put up. Errors alone are a reason.
Oct 05, 2011 09:18 PM
John Zappia
Maine Custom Realty - Portland, ME
Maine Custom Realty

I would think someone should hold RedFin accountable for this latest scouting file debacle...seems there's a class-action lawsuit in there somewhere...fortunately, they don't cover Maine.

Oct 06, 2011 12:32 AM
Simon Westfall-Kwong
Keller Williams Realty, North Central New Jersey - Chatham, NJ
The Simon Westfall-Kwong Real Estate Group

It's just a little like Zestimates ... except that Redfin does not call it EstimatedAgent!  Thanks for posting Phil!

Oct 06, 2011 04:46 AM
Jirius Isaac
Isaac Real Estate &TriStar Mortgage - Kenmore, WA
Real Estate & loans in Kenmore, WA

Looks like they stopped doing it, which is good.  The other problem is that these statistics really mean absolutely nothing.  Since when is quantiy related to quality.  In fact the average Refin agent probably does 5-10 times as many deals as the average single agent.  Numbers mean only numbers.

Oct 06, 2011 05:00 AM
Elisa Uribe Realtor #01427070
Golden Gate Sotheby's International - Oakland, CA
Opening the Doors to California Homes -East Bay

@37 sounds like they made a good decision or there would have been a class action suit in no time. A lot of agents had incorrect information posted about them. Thanks for all you did to help stop the inaccuracies.

Oct 06, 2011 05:24 AM
Liane Thomas, Top Listing Agent
Professional Realty Services® - Corona, CA
Bringing you Home!

Frightening when the average consumer relies on this kind of "information" when they are searching for a professional to represent them! I'll have to go see what mine says... 

Oct 06, 2011 12:51 PM
Dorte Engel
RE/MAX Leading Edge - Bowie, MD
ABC - Annapolis, Bowie, Crofton & rest of Maryland

Dear J Philip,

This adversarial attitude will attract a certain type of client, who luckily is not my type of client. Most of my clients only marginally care, what I did for others, so long as I do a good job for them.

Oct 06, 2011 03:52 PM
Bob Miller
Keller Williams Cornerstone Realty - Ocala, FL
The Ocala Dream Team

Hi J Philip,  Wow I had no idea!  Thanks for sharing something new to me!

Oct 06, 2011 11:13 PM