A lot of real estate agents and realtors have told us that WordPress Core doesn’t cut it for building their websites, and that’s what we’re doing today: we’re helping you choose the right plugin(s) for your site so you can stop ferreting around in your CMS and get back to making sales.
There’s no business like real estate—you get to be your own boss while earning great money and helping people to find their dream home. It can also be difficult, and sorting out the technical side of things is becoming increasingly complex. That’s what we’re doing today: we’re putting our heads together and choosing our favourite WordPress plugins for real estate.
It’s hard to have any conversation about WordPress real estate plugins without mentioning Estatik. It’s easily the most popular plugin on the market, and its pro version can handle almost anything you throw at it. It has a built-in map functionality and a mortgage calculator, a slick and responsive layout, and extensive multilingual support. Estatik is your all-purpose generalist, that smooths over a host of small annoyances and centralises everything in one easy place. Best of all—unlike a lot of the competition—the pro version only costs a single 1-off payment of $89. With its easy subscription management and PayPal integration, it should pay for itself in no time at all.
Estatik’s main competition, and another full-featured generalist. It’s most notable for its excellent IDX and MLS integration and great support. Like Estatik, it has a free ‘basic’ version and a paid pro—pro is $199, again as a one-off payment. As a note, if you’re using other WordPress plugins, you might need some professional help to set Estatik or RealTyna up—they’re so extensive that they often bump into other plugins. If you find yourself needing assistance, CodeClouds has expert WordPress developers on hand to help you.
Our final all-rounder, and the grandfather of the group. I know many agents who love this plugin, though they’re mostly older—it was the first big WP real estate app and a lot of agents came up using it. It hasn’t aged as well as I’d like, but I think there’d be a riot if I didn’t bring it up. If you prefer an older style of CMS and don’t mind something a bit more finicky, it’s still very much a viable pick.
Draw Attention lets you create great interactive house maps. You can highlight rooms and connect them up with pictures so users can explore the home from the comfort of their own home. It’s not strictly a real estate plugin, but in my experience that’s its primary use. Its maps can be very fun and colourful, but the photo linking means users still get an accurate picture of what the house looks like. You can buy it for a single site for $74, or for unlimited sites for $124.
If you’re looking to take digital viewing to the next level, then you need to look at WP VR. It’s a plugin that lets you create 360 panoramas and digital tours of your houses. Draw Attention is easier to use and more accessible, but WP VR allows your users a degree of freedom and interactivity that other plugins envy. More and more clients want to be able to explore properties without actually being on-site, and this is the sort of plugin that is probably going to become more and more popular in future.
Not everything needs to be a jack of all trades: the responsive mortgage calculator is just a really good calculator, designed for real estate agents: it can handle interest rates, down payments, amortization, and a wide variety of currencies. Sometimes there isn’t a lot to say: it’s simple and it works.
We’re also including in generalist plugins that every WordPress site should install:
Any successful WordPress site will find itself besieged by spam comments. There are two decades’ worth of roving crawlers still spamming on autopilot, and anything that attracts their attention is going to get swamped. My small personal blog gets 200 readers on a good day, and I still get so much spam that I ended up needing Akismet to even begin to handle it. As soon as I installed it, spam dropped to 0. I’ve been running it for about a year now, and not a single spam comment has got through. In the last 15 days, mine has caught exactly 100 comments, with a 100% spam hit rate. Get it now.
WordPress is one of the most popular CMSs in the world, and that means it is a frequent target for hackers and other malicious parties. Hackers will target popular sites and attempt to gain admin access, then insert malicious code that allows them to attack your clients. There are basic website security steps you can follow, but it’s also good to install a plugin to help you monitor and handle these things for you. Without Sucuri, I never would’ve noticed the slow brute force an attacker was attempting on my site—I was able to change the admin passwords and implement stronger protection because it gave me a better eye on what was happening.
Yoast is a Search Engine Optimization plugin that manages to be incredibly comprehensive and also simple to use. If you’re planning to get yourself a good position in search engine results, then this is an absolute requirement. There are green dots (which you want) and red dots (which you don’t) and that’s it, you’ve figured out Yoast and you’re on your way to the front page of Google. Okay it’s more complicated than that, but the point is that it’s remarkably easy to get a handle on even if you have no tech background whatsoever.
Depending on your particular agency you’re not going to need everything listed in this article, though I’d strongly suggest all three of the general plugins (Akismet, Sucuri and Yoast) and at least one all-rounder like Estatik. Of course, plugins can only get you so far—if you want to stand out from the crowd, you probably want to hire a team to carry out custom wordpress development. Whether you need a website, app or plugin developed, we’re the team you’re looking for. Hire our developers today!