ct. 19, 2011 - MLS Questions? Who has the answers?
Sometimes I feel like I'm standing in an empty room and all I hear is the echo of my own voice. This is one of those days.
Two MLS-related news stories are bouncing around the internet this morning-one is about the NAR IDX policy proposed changes, and the other is about FSBOs.
(Well, let's face it; they're pretty much about the same thing…)
In a nutshell, the NAR IDX issue is this: "The big news, as many have already heard, is that the Franchise IDX policy will be repealed in its entirety. The overall thrust of the proposal appears to be one aimed at restoring the status quo ante." The quotation is taken from this morning's blog post by one of my regularly-read industry voices, The Notorious Rob. Rob proceeds to examine what this proposed policy change will mean, and then asks the question, "just what percentage of the Directors of NAR, who will be voting on this proposal on Monday in Anaheim, understand the issue? How many will have studied the issue? How many will have thought about it at all?.... Could someone explain to me how hundreds of NAR Directors are not in violation of their fiduciary duty as a director of nonprofit organization?"
The other topic has to do with what's happening in the world that exists outside of the pre-meeting hysteria of an NAR convention. In this case I'm referring to Zillow's recent announcement that it has added 45,000 'for sale by owner' listings to its database of existing FSBO web and mobile real estate shopping , allowing independent home sellers to distribute their listings free of charge. Zillow obtains these listings through individual home sellers as well as listing feeds from ForSaleByOwner.com™, HomesByOwner.com®, owners.com® and Postlets® . The latter is a Zillow company, by the way, which allows home sellers, real estate agents and landlords to generate one listing and dispense it to Zillow's more than 24 million monthly unique web and mobile users, as well as 13 other sites including Yahoo!® Real Estate and craigslist®.
We're not talking peanuts here--Yahoo Real Estate is a formidable challenger to realtor.com. But what really set me back was the association manager who, upon hearing of the Zillow announcement, shrugged and said (somewhat disdainfully), "I don't keep track of Zillow."Holy leaping ostriches! How can you disregard the competition with such insouciance? Oh, wait-I know! It's because you're busy word-smithing the following NAR proposal:
Associations of REALTORS® and their multiple listing services must enable MLS participants to display aggregated MLS listing information by electronic means. Electronic display subject to this policy includes display on participants' public websites, displays controlled by participants on other websites, display on social media sites used by participants, RSS subscription, and applications for mobile devices. All electronic display of IDX information conducted pursuant to this policy must comply with state law and regulations, and MLS rules. Any display of IDX information must be controlled by the participant, including the ability to comply with this policy and applicable MLS rules.
And I bet you're thinking: "Now how am I gonna enforce THIS on a budget that has been shrinking as members are dropping away?"
Well, don't worry about real estate buyers and sellers: they may be looking elsewhere. As Zillow CEO Spencer Rascoff says, "Our integrated approach to marketing all types of real estate listings, creates the most comprehensive and data-rich shopping experience for web and mobile."
Oh, and don't worry about the MLS subscribers either. They want to be where the consumer goes. That's where the money is.
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
MLS Questions? Who has the answers? : Off Stage