Help me Build an IDX Search Form?
May 30, 2007 2:03 PM   Subscribe

I'm currently building a web site for a real estate company and they've asked me to customize an IDX search form. Having no experience with IDX (it's a real estate website specific technology), I tried googling for some information on how to build an IDX search form, but the only results were from companies who perform these services. My question is, does anyone know how to do this, or have any links to sites with this information?
posted by ghastlyfop to Computers & Internet (3 answers total)
This may not be much help, but I had the same task a few years ago.

The Agent should have some info from IDX, detailing the proper usage. You should be able to talk directly to an IDX representative. However, when I implemented this, there was no way to customize it. I had to run the IDX search page in a frame (ick) with the Realtor's branding. There was just NO other way to do it. At least, any other way they would approve, and they DO check it out. In fact, I had to sign an IDX agreement before starting work on it, and notify them when I was done and have them check it out.

I hope things have changed since then, but if they haven't, don't sweat it, just run a frame or point a link to the IDX page. Good luck.
posted by The Deej at 3:11 PM on May 30, 2007

A clarification: The agent's contract with IDX should give them a personalized search page on the IDX server. This page should already be customized for the local market, allowing the user to select specific areas of the region, types of homes, price range, etc. It should also already have the agent's contact information on every page, and the search results should have an e-mail link for asking about that particular property. This may have changed, but that's how I remember it.
posted by The Deej at 3:24 PM on May 30, 2007

The agent's contract may not have a personalized search frame thingy. This is up to the local board of Realtors' contract with their MLS software vendor (I work for one of these), and is mostly just based on board decision.

First thing I would do is contact the board and see what information you can get from them. This is usually the primary contact for IDX information for vendors like yourself. If they have the framing technology, they may or may not be able to help you customize it. That depends on the software company, I believe. If they allow you to pull data from an ftp site, it is possible to customize the way this data is displayed. The company I work for almost always allows some sort of IDX ftp pull if the framing option is available. I don't know how much you'll actually get from them on how to code it, but at least by talking to the board you'll know what information they have available for you, and what you'll be allowed to do with it.
posted by The Mauve Frog at 3:53 PM on May 30, 2007

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