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Placester vs. Real Estate Webmasters

Placester vs. Real Estate Webmasters

12 min read
Placester vs. Real Estate Webmasters

Real estate professionals are continually seeking platforms that offer comprehensive tools to showcase properties, engage with clients, and streamline their operations. In this comparison, we'll take an in-depth look at both Placester and Real Estate Webmasters, exploring their features, strengths, and limitations. Whether you're an independent agent, part of a brokerage, or a real estate team, choosing the right technology partner can greatly impact your ability to connect with clients and grow your business.

Features and Functionality

Real Estate Webmasters

The newest website platform is called Renaissance and is promoted as search engine friendly. Real Estate Webmasters' designs include basic templates for a starting website, but almost none look alike. The flat template design generally rests on the Renaissance platform, which is a solution that combines high-end front-end design with integrated back-end business tools, such as robust CRM (which they invested in recent years) and lead-generation features. Next, come minimalist menus and a hero image/video with a search field on the home page. Most REW agents and brokerage websites integrate a video in the form of neighborhood or listing videos. REW websites also often have neighborhood pages that cleanly populate neighborhood market statistics directly from the MLS.

You can hire a REW engineering team to do almost anything; they will say no to nothing. But the point is that you do not need engineers to build a customized website nowadays. REW platform and a core theme (Reinessance) that they come out with updates every year is just one of the market propositions. 


Placester offers an online codeless website builder with a straightforward interface that makes your life easier as an agent because everything falls into place naturally. There is no need to waste time figuring out how things should work when they're already before us. For example, Placester's Do It For Me (DIFM) subscription means that you can focus on your business without doing anything yourself - Placesters experts prepare the site and content. You can also choose a more hands-on approach with Do It Yourself (DIY) plan, where you create your real estate website yourself.

More than 20,000 real estate websites are created with Placester across the US. Clients can integrate Placester with many third-party tools and software, and there is also an extensive range of built-in add-ons. Placester is built for scalability, and its features reflect that. 

Top functionalities:

  • Code-free site editor, making website building accessible to anyone in the Do It Yourself (DIY) package,
  • Options for unique content creation and social media posting,
  • Dedicated CRM is included with every package,
  • Unlimited updates and maintenance forever with the Do It For Me (DIFM, DIFM+content) packages,
  • Great website features (Property Search, Featured Listings, Testimonials, IDX Listing Display Tools, Mortgage Calculator, Lead Capture Forms, Area and Community Pages, Sold Listings, Blog, etc.).
  • Placester mobile app, so agents can work on the go from anywhere they want.

Placester Designs 

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Real Estate Webmasters

  • The pricing list starts at $500 for the Renaissance out-of-the-box platform dedicated to agents, teams, and small brokerages (under 10 users) with Team Brokerage and Enterprise packages costing respectively $1000-$1500 monthly. On top of that, you have to pay  $25 extra for each user.
  • REW indicates the average monthly fee as $500 for 25 seats (yes, you have to calculate payments per user per month). But this is just the regular monthly fee, without the cost of website creation. 
  • REW sites typically start around $5k for a technology suite (website, CRM, app) that is right "out of the box." If you prefer a hands-off approach to your website, you can purchase SEO services to take care of your content and setup. The monthly SaaS pricing depends on your hosting level and the number of users you'll have, so it does vary by individual and team size, but if you wish to have a more customized website, the cost gets much higher, as they charge $200/h for engineers' work. Of course, you’ll also pay additional fees for PPC management.
  • There isn’t a free trial, and if you want to learn more or start straight away to launch your “out-of-the-box” website, you have to fill out the form (graphic below). The annual budget box has the lowest option set as $12 000-$24 000. It gives a rough idea of the cost you must brace yourself for. 

Third-party sources state that REW has special offers, and they come as follows:

  • Standard Pricing: $5000 Basic Setup + $500/month + $200/hour for Custom Work
  • Fast Track Promo: $1000 Basic Setup + $500/month + $200/hour for Custom Work
  • Spring Promo: Free Basic Setup + $1000/month + 135 Hours of Custom Work
  • All Custom Work (Including SEO): $200/hour
  • Additional Fees for PPC Management

*All contracts are a minimum of 3 years, and clients do not own their websites.


  • Pricing is transparent: you can see how much you pay directly on the website:
  • There are no hidden fees or payments and a 20% discount on annual plans.
  • Placester offers 3 plans:
  • There is a 30-day free trial in the Do It Yourself (DIY) plan (no credit card required), and you have 7 days free that will be spent on building your website by our experts if you choose one of the DIFM (Do It For Me) plans.
  • An IDX is optional, so the lowest package refers to the website without an IDX (you can add it for $25), but the price is very low for the market standard.
  • If you decide to move your website to Placester on DIFM (Do It For Me) plan, you pay only $500 of a one-time setup fee and get 3 months for free. The best thing is that the transfer is smooth and hassle-free, and Placester does it for you, so you don’t need to worry as every bit of your content is migrated, and your website isn’t down. If you want to know how it works or start your website transfer - BOOK a quick call with us. 

Contract terms

Customer support 

User Reviews and Reputation

Real Estate Webmasters reviews

Real Estate Webmasters have reviews on different platforms (G2, Hooquest, Sitejabber), but Google is the primary source of reviews, with a 4.5-star rating from 167 reviews (July 2023). 

There are, of course, other reviewing websites featuring opinions about REW. For example, on Sitejabber, Real Estate Webmasters have a rating of 2.3 stars from 39 reviews, indicating that most customers are generally dissatisfied with their purchases. Reviewers complaining about Real Estate Webmasters most frequently mention customer service problems. Real Estate Webmasters ranks 1096th among Real Estate Other sites. It would seem that the prioritization of enterprise branding sites has created a vacuum where lower-profile teams have suffered. There are also positive reviews, but the criticism seems pretty strong - there are no petty complaints:

Typically, clients complain about the same issues. Many negative reviews cite extremely poor customer service and sleazy business practices. Another criticism is an immediate change in how REW deals with clients once a contract has been signed and how hard (and expensive) it is to terminate the agreement.

Also, REW prioritizes enterprise clients willing to spend $ 100k and ignores smaller agents and teams. One of many complaints states

“Real Estate Webmasters treated me like they did not need my business. They told me that they had other customers willing to pay them 30-50K more than what I was budgeting for. They made me feel cheap, and I was willing to pay between 15-25K for their services. Which I found out later from a colleague was crazy. He stated you could get the same design work done for under $5K, and next time I should do my homework”.  

Real Estate Webmasters Lawsuits

When you type into Google Real Estate Webmaster, one of the first entries on the company is their lawsuits. They have been involved in many lawsuits in recent years. Below there are some examples with links. 

It's insane, hence the question: do you want to work with a company that is legitimately being sued? Imagine how angry someone must be not just to threaten REW, but also a lawsuit. Not just send a nasty letter about mean support, but go to court with a jury, etc. How bad must the website process have been? Is this a company that you want to work with? 

It is not only clients suing REW but also the other way around, which seems to be scandalous. It is better to steer clear of legal matters and focus on doing business without worrying about paying thousands of dollars to legal firms.

Placester reviews

Google is the main source of Placester reviews (there are also reviews from Trustpilot and G2), where there is a whooping 4.9-star rating from 600 reviews (July 2023). This number has steadily grown as more happy customers add their reviews to Google. That number changes so quickly that while preparing that comparison, we had to adjust it a few times. More importantly, it shows that the web-creation process is fast and satisfied users are willing to express their gratitude immediately after joining Placester and receiving their completed website. 

The highly positive reviews cite the most significant values of the company: responsive customer service and professionalism. 

More than 70 reviewers on Google commented that the Placester team was helpful and “got all of my questions answered confidently.” According to them, responses were quick, polite, and knowledgeable

Furthermore, 52 customers highlighted the patience and politeness of support, and 22 people stressed super fast response time and how helpful the chat feature was. They also mentioned friendliness and lack of distance or formality: their issue was treated as very important and dealt with asap.

Summary of pros and cons

The reason you want to go with Placester is to save money. You're gonna save so much money, you wouldn't believe it. The number one advantage is that in Placester, you will get a business partner. Everything that's hard about working with REW is incredibly easy and enjoyable in Placester. Messaging a human being and having a conversation!

Example of a simple change. Imagine you're out with a client and notice that a listing doesn't appear the way you want, or you wish your homepage to have that brand new sold listing that you’ve just had. So, what you do is message a human being directly from your mobile phone. And they make that change in 24 hours, and you don't have to go to a status meeting, and you don't have to get a quote for three engineering hours because you're on version 7 of the platform and that feature is available only on version 14. In Placester, you message a person, they make the change, and they message you back. You get a little notification on your phone that says: Hey, client, just made that change for you. Let me know if you'd like anything else”. It is free, and the change was made in 24 hours.

About 10 years ago Real Estate Webmasters was the only game in town if you wanted a customized real estate website. You couldn't get them done anywhere else, so REW could afford to charge huge prices. But they are just riding the coattails of that. What they think is special, in terms of product capabilities, Placester does, and not only more cheaply but we do it much better. 

REW is very good for brokerages. But they can't really provide websites to all the agents. In this regard, Placester does much better with our Agent Manager capabilities and more importantly how they're integrated into the website product. It is much easier and more affordable to offer websites to all your agents and to offer those things customized. This is an area where Placester can save customers thousands and thousands of dollars. 

On the upside, REW is one of the few companies that does legit SEO work, but unfortunately, they charge a lot of money for it. Although, if you're a brokerage and you want to dominate your marketing from an SEO perspective, REW will help you to rank in search engines, but it will take a lot of time and money. Customer service may fall by the wayside the minute you sign the 3-year contract. So that's another weakness. 

Overall, if you are a small or medium-sized team, proceed with caution. Based on the numerous client testimonials online, there’s a decent chance you may get steamrolled by the red carpet REW rolls out for its biggest clients. You may have to wait several months for a website and then months longer for revisions. At $200/hour, custom SEO and development work will be expensive. So you get the engineering hours that you purchase. But the engineers are only needed because the REW platform is outdated and lacks many base capabilities. 

You have many project meetings with engineers, and they say, they were going to do something, and they didn't do it, and it's nine months of this. That’s the reason people sue REW. That whole concept of needing engineers to make laughably basic changes to a website is a miss. In Placester these basic changes you can do yourself (Do It Yourself plan) or leave a request for them, and they are done within hours (Do It For Me plan).

It is also worth indicating that companies with customized but fully coded websites, such as Real Estate Webmaster, always have a newer version as they are in the business of selling products. The second you buy it, your website becomes obsolete. Next month they will call to sell you the newer version for full price. No upgrade is possible, and any free modifications before you will have to pay for them again. 

On the other hand, with Placester, you can request unlimited changes and updates to your website without any additional payments. Yes, it is that simple. Also, they release numerous new features and upgrades, which you can access automatically the moment they’re released. No need for an upgrade or renegotiation of your contract because you can always choose the pay-as-you-go model, where you pay your monthly subscription. When you wish to upgrade your package, it is for different reasons: your business grows, so you need to scale up, and it is not dictated by the sales team pushing you to pay more for new features or changes to your site. 

If you consider migrating your site to Placester, we can do it right now. You get the 3 months for free, with Do It for Me plan, and we're gonna clone your old website. If it comes to just the capabilities of maintaining SEO, Placester can do it with ease and on a budget. On top of that, you will get amazing support, and you're never gonna have a status meeting, or project meeting because it is unnecessary. You're gonna save thousands of dollars, and, by the way, you won't get sued ;-)

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