Zillow vs. ListHub: Who Won?

The Zillow/Trulia merger was completed over a month ago, yet Zillow has continued to create buzz in the real estate community in recent weeks – all over a listing dispute with ListHub. Though we covered the initial dispute in our February article Zillow vs. ListHub: Whose Side Are You On?the situation was finally resolved this month. The only question which remains: Who won?

After taking their battle over listing data to court after Move-owned ListHub attempted to terminate its listing agreement with Trulia, the two parties have settled and ListHub’s listing data will now disappear from Trulia on April 7, the same day it was already set to disappear from Zillow.

The two sides had been at war over listing data provided to Zillow and Trulia, the two main pillars of the Zillow Group. It began in January, when Zillow announced its decision to cancel its listing agreement with ListHub, which is owned by Move, which is owned by News Corp (NWS) and operates Realtor.com for the National Association of Realtors.

The feud was escalated when Zillow completed its $2.5 billion acquisition of Trulia in February, positioning Move and the Zillow Group as the principal combatants in the ongoing battle for online real estate supremacy.

The two sides met in court again earlier this month and the court ruled to lift the temporary restraining order and not grant the permanent injunction. Zillow Group and Move then agreed ListHub would continue to provide listing data to Trulia until April 7.

Trulia subsequently dismissed its lawsuit.

Considering that ListHub’s agreement with Trulia stretched out well beyond April 7, the decision was celebrated by Move.

“We are extremely pleased and delighted with the court’s ruling,” Move said in a statement to HousingWire. “As part of ListHub’s commitment to the industry and home buyers and sellers, we have reached an agreement to continue to provide ListHub’s data feed to the Zillow Group (which includes Trulia) until April 7th, the day ListHub’s agreement ends with Zillow.”

The fight over the ListHub listings is a bit ironic, considering what Zillow Group CEO Rascoff said recently. “When we announced we were parting ways with News Corp, we were constrained on being reliant on a competitor for listings,” Rascoff said when the Trulia acquisition was completed. He said ListHub sent inferior listings to emphasize that Move’s Realtor.com had “higher quality listings.”

Rascoff also called the separation from Move a “liberating moment.”

Do you think this separation will help or hurt agents, brokers and their clients? What are your thoughts?

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