Dear NGLRMLS Participant
As you know the Listhub arrangement died April 6, per Zillow/Trulia’s decision.
As your regional MLS we have no recourse but to try and figure out if NGLRMLS even has a role in developing any kind of a direct syndication solution going forward as the current and familiar syndication tool for us is Listhub and of course, this shall not be an option anymore for brokers wanting to display listings on Zillow/Trulia.
We sent out a survey to broker/owners in our regional MLS to measure the level of interest among broker/owners in having us pursue an arrangement. The email open rate was over 50% but the response rate to the actually survey was very low and so we’re trying to figure out next steps but our feedback information is wanting. Currently our “read” on this situation, based on the survey, is that we should not rush to a decision nor craft a hasty agreement with Zillow.
The regional NGLRMLS (TAAR, NEMBOR, CMAR) met yesterday morning in Cadillac with Jim Bridges the Zillow rep and representatives of the Paul Bunyan Association of REALTORS. At this time the regional has not determined if an MLS centered relationship with Zillow/Trulia is warranted. Most of the large franchise operations have already struck their own deal with Zillow leaving small and medium sized brokerage operations with no recourse at this time except to strike their own arrangement/agreement with Zillow/Trulia. We caution those that choose this path to carefully review such agreements as some of the ones we’ve seen are not altogether favorable to the broker.
Also, NGLRMLS does not have an IDX or RETS feed option for populating Zillow/Trulia at this time so any arrangement brokers may make would require manual data input. We had pointed out this fact to our broker/owners several weeks back knowing that an agreement may not be reached prior to the cut-off date.
Should the NGLRMLS decide to negotiate with Zillow for a direct RETS feed this will take several weeks. Nationally some MLS operations have established agreements but conversely, almost as many have not. Brokers fall into an almost evenly split category of those that favor syndication and those that do not. As to what agents want, well this must first be determined by the Broker/Owner because the control of the listings as you know belongs to them.
There are many spinning plates out in the industry right now around syndication, data feeds and data security issues. We are first and foremost trying to insure that our members and their MLS data are sufficiently protected and secure, now and in the future.
We’ll keep you and all of our members posted on further developments as this evolves and again, we apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you or your clients. Like you we are subject to frustrating and changing events occurring that fall well beyond our sphere of influence.
Kimberly R. Pontius CAE, RCE, GREEN, E-Pro
Northern Great Lakes REALTORS MLS