Building a completely custom real estate website is very simple using Placester’s open source WordPress platform. To start, you’ll need to have the “real estate website builder” plugin installed and active. You can download and install the plugin directly from or at For more information about the Real Estate Website Builder plugin check out the article here.

This guide assumes you are experienced with building themes for WordPress. If you aren’t experienced in building WordPress themes, consider checking out one of the other guides about modifying Placester’s existing open source themes, modifying a theme’s css using the web interface, or using shortcodes to turn any theme into a real estate website.

Once you have the real estate website builder plugin is installed, follow the steps below:

Quick Start Guide

  • First create a directory for your new theme and add the following files to it: functions.php, index.php, screenshot.png, and style.css. Those are the basic files needed to create a WordPress theme. It should look like this:


  • Next, update your style.css file to add your name, license, author details, etc..
  • Now initialize Blueprint in the functions.php file by including blueprint/blueprint.php at the top of the file. Like this:

/* Load the Placester Blueprint Theme Framework. */
require_once( WP_PLUGIN_DIR . "/placester/blueprint/blueprint.php" );
new Placester_Blueprint('2.5');

Your functions.php file should look like this:



  • Now that blueprint is installed in your new theme you are ready to build a fully functional real estate website. Assuming you’ve done everything correctly, the theme is now ready to be installed and will render all the basic blog and real estate templates.

Next Steps

Within the Blueprint Theme Framework is a a series of macro methods which provide core functionality to your website requiring minimal coding.

These include the following:

  1. Basic Real Estate Listings (get_listings) 
  2. AJAX-enabled Listings (get_listings_list_ajax)Bethesda AJAX Listings
  3. Image Slideshows (slideshow)Sample Slideshow
  4. Listing Locations (map)Sidebar Map