You might want to rethink that strategy

By
Real Estate Agent with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage 531132

Last week I was working desk duty and got a call from an agent wanting showing instructions on a house. Normally, we use a showing service and those instructions are in the MLS listing.

He claimed they weren’t, so I looked it up in the MLS. Sure enough, the showing instructions are in there plain and simple...call CSS. That’s when he confessed he was on Homes.com, and not in the MLS.

Strange for an agent, so I asked him why. He said he was cutting down on expenses and discontinued the MLS, and was using online sites to search for homes for his clients. Wow, how can an agent give up on the single best tool available?

Before he got off the call, I reminded him he may want to speak to his broker about this decision. I seem to recall that all offers of compensation are made through the MLS. If that’s the case, his decision could be even more expensive.

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 Richard Iarossi is a full time licensed REALTOR®, working in Crofton, MD. My coverage areas are: Anne Arundel, Prince George’s, Howard, Calvert, Queen Anne, and Baltimore City and County. I specialize in residential real estate, working with both buyers and sellers. Use the registration free search on my website at www.RichSellsHomes.com. If you’re not already working with a REALTOR®...I can help. Call me at 443-995-9595 (Cell) or 410-451-6255 (Office).

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Topic:
Real Estate Best Practices
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"Whacked"!!!
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Comments 46 New Comment

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Rainmaker
604,463
Sussie Sutton
UTR TEXAS Realtors - Rep for buyers and sellers.
UTR Texas Realtors

WOW! In our area if our broker is on MLS then each agent under his brokerage has to be a member of HAR too. I wonder if he even is an agent.

November 21, 2012 08:03 PM
Rainmaker
567,444
Hella Mitschke Rothwell
Hawaii & California Real Estate Broker
(808) 226-1095 or (831) 626-4000

Richard: We have a rule here where I am that if the broker is on the MLS, all his/her agents have to be too. If the broker isn't, the agents can't be. So in your case, I bet the broker doesn't know he cut out the MLS. 

November 21, 2012 08:06 PM
Rainmaker
704,631
Winston Heverly
GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA
Winston Realty, Inc.

Richard, that is a good one, and to think there are folks out there actually working real estate this way. Did you ask him if he uses a smart phone or flip phone? Wow 

November 21, 2012 08:17 PM
Rainmaker
1,003,705
Sheila Anderson
The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133
Referral Group Incorporated

Good morning Richard. This story is incredible and very, very sad. You can't do business if you're not in the business. Happy Thanksgiving.    Sheila

November 22, 2012 04:44 AM
Rainmaker
480,655
Christine Bohn
Realtor, Gainesville FL
RE/MAX Professionals

Hi Richard !   So, that guy is cutting down on expenses???  Guess he and his broker don't seem to think they have cut down their income!  I bet he was just being LAZY.   But hey....we can all be lazy to day  HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

November 22, 2012 04:57 AM
Ambassador
923,711
Amanda and Jared Christiansen, YOUR Fort Wayne Realtors
Century 21 Bradley.
Century 21 Bradley (260)704-0843

There's a guy around here that has the same strategy.  I'm with you.  I don't think it's a good one.                                          

November 22, 2012 04:58 AM
Rainmaker
1,199,416
Richie Alan Naggar Author PEARLS SERIES of books
on LIFE and LOVE plus Real Estate too!
People first then business! Ran Right Realty Riverside, Ca

I hear on good authority that many are behind on paying their MLS dues and fees...When you cannot make those fees, perhaps you got one foot out the door of this profession already. The other foot will follow shortly....good in the biz post

November 22, 2012 05:22 AM
Rainmaker
559,257
Corinne Guest
Barrington's Country Suburban Home Matchmaker
Barrington Realty Company

Time for him to move over and let the active professionals take his client while he searches for a job. If you cannot pay it's a sure thing your business is all but dead. Happy Thanksgiving.

November 22, 2012 05:27 AM
Rainmaker
891,496
Michael Setunsky
Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA
Michael's Commercial LLC

Richard, I believe the MRIS rules state if the Broker is a member it is mandatory all agents belong. Not the place to cut down on expenses. How is he accessing lockboxes?

November 22, 2012 05:30 AM
Rainmaker
337,348
Nina Hollander
Your Charlotte/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Area Realtor
RE/MAX Executive Realty/Charlotte, NC

You just can't be too careful these days... so much fraud. And as listing agents, we do have a fiduciary responsibility to keep our clients' homes safe.

November 22, 2012 05:30 AM
Rainmaker
623,600
Wayne and Jean Marie Zuhl
The Last Names You'll Ever Need in Real Estate
Hallmark Realtors

Wo. That sounds more than a little short-sighted. MLS dues are high, but the cost of NOT joining seem higher.

November 22, 2012 05:32 AM
Rainer
207,130
Gloria Laughton Allston
GREEN, SFR
COLDWELL BANKER/PRINCETON

I assume the home of interest was out of his MLS area.  In his defense, I have been contacted by Leads who are interested in getting more info or viewing homes that are in neighboring counties that list on one of the MLS' not included in the 3 that I belong to (fortunately my Supra Key allows access to listings in 5 counties). If I am interested in accepting the Lead I have no choice but to contact the Listing office to find out how I can show it.   

November 22, 2012 05:49 AM
Rainmaker
186,567
Olga Simoncelli
Broker/Owner Veritas Prime, Candlewood Lake Area
Veritas Prime Real Estate

That's just mind-boggling. As you pointed out, there is so much useful information on the MLS. Isn't this agent opening himself up for possible legal action by his buyers if he is not in possession of complete information, which may only be available on the MLS in terms of all the listings and details? Tricky. As hard-strapped as any business might be, one always has to invest money to make more money.

November 22, 2012 05:58 AM
Rainmaker
546,890
Than Maynard
Broker - Licensed to List & Sell - 405-990-8862
Coldwell Banker Heart of Oklahoma

Really? In our area everyone in the office must belong to the local MLS. We actually belong to two of them. If they find an active agent who isn't on the MLS they will give a warning and then de-activate the whole company.

November 22, 2012 06:15 AM
Rainmaker
192,181
Brian Kuhns
Fort Wayne Real Estate by Brian Kuhns
Coldwell Banker Roth Wehrly Graber

Wow....I'm assuming then that he uses Zillow to prepare a CMA for his clients too! 

November 22, 2012 06:19 AM
Rainmaker
1,226,580
Al & Peggy Cunningham Brokers, Brampton Ontario Homes For Sale 905-450-5500
RE/MAX Realty Services Inc.

Wow Rich! This guy must be almost out of the business and just doesn't know it yet. Have a Happy Thanksgiving Rich and to your family as well.

November 22, 2012 06:25 AM
Ambassador
1,637,818
Fernando Herboso - Broker for Maxus Realty Group
301-246-0001 Serving Maryland, DC and Northern VA
Maxus Realty Group - Broker 301-246-0001

. . and that's why I get these call so often. .I use CSS as well and it puzzled me they couldn't find it!

November 22, 2012 06:25 AM
Rainmaker
251,864
Mike & Eve Alexander
Exclusively Representing ONLY Orlando Home Buyers
Buyers Broker of Florida

Nothing surprises me anymore and actually I feel sorry for him...if he thinks he cannot afford MLS dues, he probably cannot...

Eve in Orlando

November 22, 2012 06:27 AM
Rainmaker
119,442
Chuck Mixon
Cutler Bay Specialist, GRI, CDPE, BPOR
The Keyes Company

If you can afford that local dues , and business is that bad. Then it is time to look for a new profession. Yes the market is tuff today but only the tuff will servive. Giving up on the MLS will in improver his deal it can only hurt them.

November 22, 2012 06:42 AM
Rainmaker
266,046
Jeff Pearl
RE/MAX Distinctive / LIC in VA

He should figure out a way to renew his mLS, or maybe he could partner with someone in his office? Although, I just read that there is a new app out now for i-pads where agents can enter a new listing without an MLS #.

November 22, 2012 07:04 AM
Ambassador
1,479,725
Tammy Lankford
Your Lake Sinclair Expert (706-485-9668)
Lane Realty

I can't imagine.  I do have one agent who doesn't have a ekey because she's a REO agent and uses combo boxes and is only a listing agent.  And she just got tired of paying for it when she never used it.  But like someone before menationed here if the brokerage is a member all agents must also be members.

November 22, 2012 07:04 AM
Rainmaker
545,669
Gary Frimann
California Broker and REALTOR
Eagle Ridge Realty / Signature Homes & Estates

Our MLS makes it mandatory for all agents of a Broker who is on the MLS to join the MLS.  You are correct though as to the offer of compensation, as it is extended only to those other members of the Multiple Listing Service.  We've seen quite a few wash out in our area.

November 22, 2012 07:14 AM
Rainmaker
773,011
Mike Cooper
Your Winchester, VA Real Estate Pro
Winchester Real Estate Sales, Cornerstone Business Group Inc

Rich, I can't even imagine how you could be in this business without using the MLS.  What about docs that are loaded on there?  Or special instructions?  Or notice of a buyer's agent bonus for . . .   *-)  Have a great Thanksgiving.

November 22, 2012 07:57 AM
Rainmaker
675,727
Mary Yonkers
Erie/PA Real Estate Instructor
Alan Kells 1-814-881-7548

Just amazing how some people do business. I agree with most of the comments above.  Congratulations on Featured Post.

November 22, 2012 08:01 AM
Rainmaker
818,617
J. Philip Faranda
Broker-Owner
J. Philip Faranda (J. Philip R.E. LLC) Westchester County NY

Penny wise pound foolish

November 22, 2012 08:23 AM
Rainmaker
449,886
Andrea Bedard
M.A.; REALTOR Silver Spring, MD and beyond
Thompson Company Realtors

Hi Richard, something tells me that his broker doesn't have a clou! He is not saving money but it might be too late when he realizes it. I've heard from clients that their previous agent could only show them homes on combo lockboxes b/c they couldn't afford the Sentri-key! This one is new to me .. but just as disturbing.

November 22, 2012 08:44 AM
Rainer
121,877
Jon Karlen
Louisville & Shelbyville Kentucky real estate
Finish Line Realty - Shelbyville & Louisville Ky Real Estate

Great and amusing story.  If you aren't willing to invest in the #1 most important tool for you to do your job, what kind of service can you really provide your own clients?

November 22, 2012 08:44 AM
Ambassador
1,010,201
Harry F. D'Elia
Investor , Mentor, CSSN, Radio Coach, REOs, ABR
Precision Real Estate Inc.

I cannot imagine not having access to MLS as a real estate agent. That is like going on a journey without a GPS. Come on people-cut back on going out to eat or other expenses. Pay down the debt.

November 22, 2012 09:00 AM
Rainmaker
332,169
Brian Rugg
Sun City TX Real Estate - Georgetown, TX Real Est
Rugg Realty LLC Sun City Texas 512-966-3200

Hello Richard:

At the is agent 'fessed-up rather than spinning a yarn about MLS being "down" or his computer was on the fritz.

November 22, 2012 09:04 AM
Ambassador
1,801,096
Jeff Dowler CRS
Carlsbad CA Homes for Sale (760) 840-1360
Solutions Real Estate

Richard

Well that's a new one. I can't imagine trying to find homes for clients that way on an on-going basis, and given what we know about all the portals you know that this strategy is not very reliable. Cost? Ours is $130 quarterly. I guess I don't see that as a huge expense given the value - other things cost more. And I guess he does not list property.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Jeff

November 22, 2012 10:04 AM
Rainmaker
1,248,075
Carla Muss-Jacobs, Principal Broker/Owner
Buyer Focused ~ Buyer Results
BuyersAgentPortland.com | (503) 810-7192 Portland Metro Exclusive Buyers Agent | 100% Buyer Representation ~ 100% of the Time

Those sites can have really stale information, no?  It's not just finding listings, but setting up showing ... howe does he do comps for his clients?!?  Oh brother that's sad for his clients. 

Anyway -- Happy T-day

November 22, 2012 10:21 AM
Ambassador
1,137,629
Paul Henderson
I always put my clients first in any transaction!
RE/MAX Professionals.

Makes it kind of hard to obtain a key card without being a member of the MLS.

November 22, 2012 10:36 AM
Rainmaker
1,102,698
Myrl Jeffcoat
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent
GreatWest Realty

I just wanted to stop by and wish you and your family a blessed Thanksgiving, Richard!  I hope your day is special!

November 22, 2012 11:22 AM
Rainmaker
233,579
David Grbich
Orange County Real Estate - 949-500-0484
Ventana Coastal Properties - www.FindCARealEstate.com

Wow - sure his buyers would be impressed to know he does even have MLS! Happy Thanksgiving!

November 22, 2012 12:13 PM
Rainmaker
188,542
Sharon Kowitz
Cary, NC Relocation Specialist ~ Buying or Selling
Fonville Morisey-CRS-SRES-ABR-GRI-E-Pro-CREN

I see this post got a lot of attention...GOOD! I have had the calls from "agents" from out of our area wanting codes to my homes/listings....i always offer to meet them at the property but never-ever give out the code ....we have a $1500 fine! Now that is more than our MLS dues for 2 years! 

November 22, 2012 03:17 PM
Rainmaker
309,666
Ernie Steele
Lebanon, PA Real Estate 717-273-3774
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Homesale Realty

Rich...I'm a little behind in my reading...Glad to see you still do desk duty as well...I feel sorry for the guy because he's close to finished in this business and grabbing at straws...Enjoy your day friend.

November 22, 2012 04:08 PM
Ambassador
1,227,260
Erica Ramus
MRE, Schuylkill County PA Real Estate
Erica Ramus - Ramus Realty Group - Pottsville, PA

In our area all agents of a broker must belong to the MLS. You cannot just drop it. So is the broker a member?

November 22, 2012 04:53 PM
Ambassador
1,158,417
Tammie White
TW Realty Group, Franklin TN, South of Nashville
Benchmark Realty, LLC (615) 495-0752 or www.TWRealtyGroup.net

Every broker I've been with required MLS participation. I'm surprised he's able to do this.

November 22, 2012 05:17 PM
Rainmaker
190,139
Gregory Bain
Mezzina Real Estate & Insurance

maybe he is an "out of area" agent. I have no choice but to belong to the MLS and to do so I must also pay the bandits at the NAR and the state association. however, there are three other MLS that I at one time or another belonged - sometimes I've belonged to all four at the same time. maybe that's what the agent was doing and stopped.

November 22, 2012 05:26 PM
Rainmaker
646,835
Evelyn Kennedy
Alameda, Real Estate, Alameda, CA
Gallagher & Lindsey, Alameda, California

Rich:

Wow, how can he work without the MLS?  That is a colossal mistake and one he will be sorry for.  Happy Thanksgiving.

November 22, 2012 05:31 PM
Ambassador
1,550,526
Christine Donovan
Broker/Attorney 800-610-7253 DRE01267479 - Costa M
Donovan Blatt Realty
Richard - I dont know how you can effectively sell real estate without being a member of MLS.
November 22, 2012 06:32 PM
Rainmaker
340,850
Pete X-Investment to Luxury, Huntington Beach, CA -GRI-MCNE 714.459.2017 OCLister.com
Outstanding Agent Referrals-Nationwide
X Group Real Estate Advocates

Is he really an agent?

Could he just be a commoner just trying to gain access?

November 22, 2012 06:54 PM
Rainmaker
537,748
Ginger Harper
Your Southport~Oak Island Agent!
Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage

Glad that you have recognized the problem and I know you will resolve it,.

November 22, 2012 07:24 PM
Rainmaker
1,153,240
Cheryl Ritchie
Southern Maryland 301-980-7566
RE/MAX Leading Edge www.GoldenResults.com
I would think it might not be an agent...maybe someone posing as an agent to get access.
November 22, 2012 09:04 PM
Rainmaker
1,075,461
Wallace S. Gibson, CPM
LandlordWhisperer
Gibson Management Group, Ltd.

He needs to NOT be in the business....I think agents need to outline to their clients HOW they will assist them and if they are not members of MLS, that should be disclosed before their clients sign on for their services.

November 23, 2012 04:46 AM
Rainmaker
1,732,022
William Feela
Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No.
WHISPERING PINES REALTY

Richard....I now some companies taht will not pay a co-op fee if they don't belong to the MLS.

November 23, 2012 06:38 PM
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1,319,272

Richard Iarossi

Crofton MD Real Estate, Annapolis MD Real Estate
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