For those of you who haven’t heard of Walk Score, I’d highly recommend checking the site out and their real estate services. They announced a few early adopters of their API back in January at Inman, but all the integrations I’ve seen to date (Postlets and Ziprealty) have simply shown a Walk Score value on a listing detail page. A much deeper integration that the Walk Score folks are out pitching to potential partners is a “search by Walk Score” search filter. It comes as no surprise to me that one of the great innovators in real estate search, Estately, is one of the first sites (ColorProperty.com was the 1st) to include a “search by Walk Score” feature. As Matt Lerner pointed out on the Walk Score blog this week, you can now search for homes for sale on Estately that have a Walk Score of 90 or above within 1/4 mile of the new Seattle light rail. That’s pretty powerful from a buyer’s perspective. For Seattle buyers who value walkability and/or don’t have cars, it looks like they’ll have far better luck north of Downtown — you can see that there are currently 685 properties on the market in Seattle with a Walk Score above 90; most of them located north of Downtown.
I think the ability to search by the Walk Score value is extremely useful and valuable to “green” buyers who put a huge emphasis on local amenities, which is a significant portion of the population in largely liberal cities such as Portland and Seattle. I would guess we’ll see this type of search functionality on a number of sites in 2009, particularly since there is now such a great example implementation to show other potential partners. For the agents and brokers reading this, I would love to hear your feedback on the Estately integration. Is this type of search filter something you’d want to add (or have your IDX provider add) to the search interface on your own website?