Using Houzez with IDX can be a challenge if you try to build a nice-looking website. Most of the IDX plugins offer only iframe solutions that will ruin this theme design and stop you from using the advanced features. We built MLS Import, having all these shortcomings in mind. And we think our product solved all these problems.
To understand IDX in real estate clearly, consider reading ‘What Is IDX (Internet Data Exchange)‘, an article that simplifies this complex topic.
Houzez is a successful real estate theme with a big list of features and a nice design and can be an excellent solution for an IDX / MLS real estate website.
This article will give you a few details about how you can integrate listings from your MLS into a WordPress website that uses the Houzez theme. We will not cover the actual import but explain how imported data is stored and how you can use it.
Before reading the article, you can review our demo and see this theme working with sample MLS data imported via our plugin.
If you want to build your MLS website with Houzez and IDX / MLS import, then you need to buy this theme from Theme Forest. After you purchase the theme, you need to install it and maybe import a demo package.
If you think Houzes is not working for your situation, consult the Best IDX WordPress Themes Guide article.
Setup and Import
Once the theme is installed and activated, our team will start importing. You may want to import thousands of listings, and because of that, we are supervising the import process.
Before getting data, we will ask you to review the plugin settings and choose what type of properties you want. You can choose the price, city, county, price, or property category.
You can find more details about the installation process here: https://mlsimport.com/mls-import-installation/.
Post type, taxonomies, and agents
In the Houzez theme, all the listings will be imported as a custom post type named: “property.” That means you will be able to see and use the imported listings, just like any other manually added post.
This theme has several taxonomies (categories), and we use all except Status and Labels.
We do not use Status because we only work with “Active” listings, while “Labels” is not used because there is no such thing in MLS RESO standards.
Houzez and IDX / RESO fields
As you probably know, any MLS database can have a lot of information about a property. It is not uncommon to have 3 to 400 listing data fields for each property.
All this data is saved like an array, and this array is saved as single metadata for the property. Unfortunately, this means you cannot use these fields on search, but they will be displayed on the property page.
Property Lists and Property page
Houzez has several options for the property page. There are four layouts to choose from, and you can show the content like tabs or accordions.
You can also create various property lists and show only listings from a specific county, city, or category. All you need to do is create a page with the “Property list template.” You will find that the “Property listing advanced options” section is filled with imported data.
All the pages come with some nice Ajax filters that visitors can use when searching for a particular category.
Unlike the WpResidence theme, there is no “build your own” property page, but I think you have plenty of options to choose from.
Features and Amenities
Just like in Wp Residence, the features and amenities are saved as a category. It means that a property has or does not have a term that is listed in the “Features ” category.
When we import, we ensure that the right data goes into this category and that all the available information is displayed on a property page in the “Features” section.
Having thousands of listings on your site is excellent, but that means you will also have ten more time images. And if you want to save those on your server, you will need a lot of storage and computing power.
Fortunately, MLS Import has an excellent workaround for this problem. We are saving the images as simple entries into a database, but we do not copy the images locally.
We keep using the images from the MLS Content Delivery Network and save a lot of space on your server, improve speed on your website, and allow you to use all the theme features, sliders or image features.
Just like any other successful theme, Houzez comes with plenty of shortcodes. You have ready-to-use blocks for Visual Composer and Elementor, but you don’t have them for Guttenberg. All the imported listings will work in any scenario.
There is one setback here, and it is not related to MLS Import. Some shortcodes may need big images, but not all systems will have that. So, it is up to you to choose the best properties.
This theme comes with two maps, Google and Open Street Maps. Since you have all the listings locally, you can use those providers but also one of the two types of markers available: price or icon.
Custom Development Services
If you need custom development services, digital marketing, branding, or site maintenance, and you’re not sure which company to hire, check our customization services
Edit and delete of the MLS Listings.
You don’t have to do anything once our plugin is installed and activated. MLS import will check your provider database every hour; if a new property appears, it will import it. If a listing is edited, it will get and save all the latest details.
If a property has its status changed to “canceled,” “expired,” etc., it will delete that from your local database along with any image database entries.
If you want to build your site using Houzez theme and MLS Import, these are the following steps.
- Contact us and see if your MLS is compatible with RESO standards.
- Buy your domain name.
- Get your site hosted. If you want to import more than 1000 listings, you will need a good provider, preferably a virtual private server.
- Buy the theme from ThemeForest.
- Install the theme and import some demo content.
- Register with your MLS and send us your connection details and hosting credentials.
- We will do the import and put the plugin on autopilot. Editing, deleting, and adding new listings will happen automatically.
Here are some useful links
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