How to start and monetize a real estate directory website


Starting a real estate directory website might seem overwhelming – but with the right information, it can be a lot easier. If you want to build your own real estate website, you need to start with brainstorming and planning. In this article, we will cover everything you need to know when setting up a website for real estate.

Building and launching a high-quality website for real estate can be time-consuming and complicated. This post will show you how to create and monetize a website that will become an essential resource for agents looking to list their properties. Follow these steps to build your own real estate directory website with high-quality content.

Get inspired and take action!

What is a real estate website

A real estate website is a website that provides information about properties for sale, rent and lease. This can include photos of the property, descriptions and often prices in use as well as maps to help potential buyers find the location.

It’s also a great source of information on financing, rates, loans and other related topics. A single page can provide links to various aspects of the real estate industry – agents, builders and property sales statistics – to give an overview of what’s happening in the market.

Home buyers are looking for a website that is easy to use, has up-to-date listings, and can be accessed on any device. A single platform real estate directory website offers all three of these things. It’s also relatively inexpensive to set up – especially if you have some of the design and development skills required.

Home sellers want to find as much information as they can about the home they are selling. This includes comparing it with others in the area, so they will be comfortable with the asking price. If you offer a real estate directory website, you can list all of this information in one place. Including the property description, photographs and video, survey data, school district details, local amenities and shops, crime statistics and more. Our site also allows clients to filter by size or location on their search for their dream home.

There are many types of property websites

There are many types of property websites. Here are a few examples:

  • A real estate directory website is typically where users submit listings to be shared with other website users in the same geographical area. This type of website is also popular because it makes it easier to find homes.
  • A real estate marketplace website is typically where customers can request or schedule visits and view properties online, then contact the seller or agent with questions or to make an offer.

How you can make money from your real estate website

A real estate website can make money in a few different ways. The most common way is through advertising banners on the site. However, they also have the opportunity to offer premium listings to buyers and sellers, generate leads with free reports, or offer a mortgage calculator and loan rates.

Let’s compare 3 popular monetization models for real estate sites.

  1. The most common way is to charge a listing fee. For every property that gets listed on the site, the company will charge a certain fee.
  2. Almost every website that deals with real estate offers promotional services for an extra fee. That includes featuring listings high on search results or highlighting them to stand out.
  3. Traditional advertising is still a great business model and it has been the backbone to many success stories.

What are the benefits of using WordPress for your property listing website?

WordPress is a great solution for anyone who doesn’t want to spend a lot of time in the technical aspects of website building. It is simple to use, and you can always find a plugin or theme that solves any issue that you may come across when designing your site. By using WordPress, you’ll be able to make changes with just a few clicks from your dashboard. And the best part? You don’t need any technical experience to get started!

Millions of websites are powered by WordPress, making it the most popular content management system in the world. WordPress is a free and open source blogging software. It has easy-to-use features that are fully functional, SEO-friendly, and comes with a community to offer support.

How to choose the right WordPress Theme for a Real Estate Site

Choosing a WordPress theme for your site is very important. It will dictate how your site looks, what it does and how the user interacts with it. There are many different WordPress themes available, some with more features than others. The key to choosing a theme is to have an idea of what you want from your site before you start looking.

We’ve compiled a list of features that you should look for in a plugin if you want to create your own real estate website.

  • Drag-and-drop based: It will be easier for real estate website owners to upload and update their listings because they will not have to know how to code.
  • Advanced search system: With more advanced search functions, we make it easier for our customers to find the right home.
  • Property Management: it helps real estate websites maintain their property, capture leads for new listings and to generate more revenue by holding off on site updates.
  • Analytics and insight property data: Increase the conversion rates of your website by using insights and analytics to create more personalized content.
  • Custom Fields Generator: Your theme has a custom fields generator that lets you fully customize your website’s forms and property information.
  • Capture leads forms: Your theme has to help real estate website owners generate leads by capturing contact information online.
  • Mobile-friendly: A mobile-friendly website will receive more visits than a regular website.
  • Front-end property submission: The ability to submit a listing in the front-end of the website saves time and energy for the real estate agents and property owners.

Now you have a better understanding what features to be looking for when making your decision. For this tutorial, we will use the Houzez real estate WordPress theme. It’s a premium WordPress theme that is perfect for building any type of real estate website.

How to set up a real estate directory website

First, you need to register a domain name for your website. This is extremely important because it takes about six months for some registrars to get back to you with the registration information. Once that’s done, you’ll need to purchase a web hosting plan and install WordPress. This will allow you to install a theme of your choice and customize it to your liking.

1. Install the WordPress theme

In order to start a real estate website, you will need a WordPress theme installed. A WordPress theme is simply a template that includes basic design elements and programming for your website. In order to install one, click on the “Appearance > Themes” tab in the dashboard of your WordPress site and then choose the theme you want to install.

Please watch the video below to learn how to install a WordPress theme. When we are using Houzez, the installation process is pretty much the same for all WordPress themes.

2. Create the property types

The next step in creating a real estate directory website is to create various property types. You will need to decide what types of properties you want, so that you can determine the amount of content you need. Some properties might include apartments, single family homes, condos, land and more. You need to make sure that your website is able to handle all types of listings because it will be hard to predict how many requests for a particular type of property there will be at any given time.

Navigate to Real Estate >> Type in your left sidebar and create the property types needed for your website.

3. Create the property status

When it comes to real estate properties, the listing status is one of the most important things that potential buyers need to know. In the left sidebar of your admin, navigate to >> Real Estate >> Status.

4. Create the homepage

The next step is to add a new page to the website. This page will contain the search form, along with listing categories, listings, and any other custom content you want to add. You can use the Elementor page builder to create a new page that we’ll call “Homepage”.

To create a new page using the Elementor page builder select Pages > Add New in your left sidebar and from the Page Attributes box located on the right of your screen and select Elementor Full Width. After that click on Edit with Elementor.

Once you click Edit With Elementor, you should be redirected to the front end of your website. Scroll down to find the Houzez widgets and drag them on your page.

5. Create the CRM

One of the most important aspects of a real estate directory website is the CRM system. It allows you to organize and manage all of your information so you can focus on updating your listings. You don’t want to waste time tracking down contact information for potential clients that are interested in buying or renting property, especially if you’re running a small business. The CRM will enable you to put together a list of people who have searched for properties that match their criteria and send them tailored messages about those properties.

In your left sidebar navigate to Pages > Add New to create a new page and from the Page Attributes box located in the right sidebar select Template: Houzez CRM and Publish the page.

6. Create the monetization system

The Membership System is your key to success. If you plan on monetizing your real estate directory website, then it is going to be one of the most important things that you need to have in place. The Membership System will be the foundation of your site.

If you choose to charge your users for membership, there are three ways you can do this.

  1. You can create customized memberships and offer payment plans to suit your customers.
  2. You can charge a fee for each listing which is published by users
  3. If you don’t want to limit listings by price, you can also charge people who want their listing to be promoted

The following steps are essential to set up properly your website for Membership. It is important to follow these four steps to set up a web page for your membership. Check out our documentation for step-by-step suggestions.

  1. Allow the user to sign up.
  2. Create different user profiles for people in your shop, assigning a specific set of roles and capabilities to each profile.Setup the Front-end Property Submission Page to let your agents and agencies be able to log in and submit property listings from the front -end of your website.
  3. Setup the Front-end Dashboard to have a property management system where you can administrate properties, coordinate your agents and accept submissions.
  4. Setup Paid or free Submissions.
  5. If you enabled paid submissions you have to set up the Membership Packages
  6. Set up payment gateways to receive payments with PayPal, Stripe, 2CO or Wire Bank Transfer.
  7. Turn on invoices
  8. Customize the “Thank You” page.
  9. Configure automatic email notifications


It is not as easy or as quick to start and monetize as some would like. You must know how to invest in good domain names, top-quality web hosting and domain privacy. You also have to be willing to put in the work required for designing a website that is attractive and useful for real estate agents, brokers and other information consumers.

If you are considering designing a real estate directory website, Houzez may be a valuable option. We make it easy for professionals to create an attractive landing page quickly and easily. If you need help with setup, please contact us. Our Houzez theme makes it easy for web designers to design a beautiful real estate website.

More To Explore

Latest Post

Subscribe to our newsletter