Listing data

It’s Your Data – Make Sure You Can Use It!

by Mike Audet on December 9, 2013

I do a lot of work helping MLSs choose their next MLS technology vendor and I also work with brokers that use multiple real estate technology tools.  The one thing both sets of technology have in common is the fact that without good data the technology is worthless.  Numerous roadblocks exist today, however, on the data front that often derails the best software.  Some roadblocks come from within the MLS but some come from the technology vendors themselves. MLSs can serve as roadblocks to listing and sales data at the source, meaning they may put arbitrary restrictions on data use by their own members, through their MLS policies, or they make the process to get data difficult. This is not true for all MLSs, of course, but all of us that have been following the concerns voiced by the Realty Alliance realize there are still many Brokers who feel some MLSs make it difficult for them to get and use all of the real estate data they need and are entitled to. The other data issue, that may not be so apparent to the average real estate professional is the problem created when an MLS or Broker wants to move from one technology to a new technology and comes to realize that much of the data they have entered into their current technology platform will not be able to be transferred to their new technology platform.  This means thousands of hours of data input will be lost and huge amounts of work done by real estate professionals will have to be done again. The real estate data I am referring to in this case is not listing data, which of course is critically important, but rather data entered by users and consumers in the course of conducting real estate transactions.  This includes data such as contact information, agent saved searches, client saved searches, custom report templates, CMAs, listing carts and so on. Today, the most used part of any MLS system is the auto search and client connection feature.  There are numerous features and functions associated with these services.  Due to the sheer numbers of contacts agents have that use these features the MLS system spends more times handling these specific functions than it does doing searches for agents, or other functions just used by agents.  But, with the majority of MLS systems today, if you change vendors, you will […]