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2010-05-11 18:32:58

MLS 5.0: Local, Regional, State or National MLS


Real estate is local, but technology today will allow for great economies of scale, lower prices for a better MLS tool, user-defined experience and more. In the past, each MLS or locale had its own idiosyncrasies, definitions and terms, all “essential” to that particular local MLS. Today, with so much information available beyond the MLS, do all of those different fields remain necessary, in light of the benefit that can be derived from creating standards…not technology standards, but standard terms?

Is there a technology solution that would allow for the mapping of data so that every local MLS can retain all of its information fields? There is a data dictionary of sorts, similar in concept to what was referred to as DXM (Data Exchange Method) during the Realtors Information Network Project (RIN) back in the mid 1990s, but it is not necessarily an easy task and this solution would likely take longer.

Some fear that someone with access to listing information in their area will invade their territory and carpetbag some business. In light of this fear, those concerned want to attempt to keep the listing information proprietary to their respective MLS participants and subscribers. But the next generation of home buyers, sellers and Realtors won’t stand for it. They will insist on more transparency and freer flow of the listing and marketing information.

The real benefit in boundary-less access to information is in the ability to provide information to one’s relocating client, not the ability to sell a home down in San Diego to a buyer from Los Angeles. A Los Angeles broker would be able to provide information to their customer and refer them, better armed with knowledge about the San Diego market, to a San Diego broker.

Great advances are being made to regionalize or share MLS data in mega markets in California and also in other areas of the country. These efforts are steps in the right direction.

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Saul Klein is CEO of InternetCrusade and Point2 Technologies Inc., author of MLS 5.0 – The MLS of the Future Whitepaper, a licensed real estate broker in California for the past 32 years and former president of the San Diego Association of REALTORS®. Klein is also creator of NAR’s ePRO Technology Certification Program and NAR’s Web 2.0 & Social Media Course.

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