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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Show All Comments
Rainmaker
625,618
Sussie Sutton
UTR Texas Realtors - Pearland, TX
UTR TEXAS Realtors - Rep for buyers and sellers.

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.

Nov 21, 2012 08:03 PM #1
Rainmaker
571,664
Hella Mitschke Rothwell
(808) 226-1095 or (831) 626-4000
Hawaii & California Real Estate Broker

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. 

Nov 21, 2012 08:06 PM #2
Rainmaker
759,146
Winston Heverly
Winston Realty, Inc. - Atlantis, FL
GRI, ABR, SFR, CDPE, CIAS, PA

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 

Nov 21, 2012 08:17 PM #3
Rainmaker
1,094,277
Sheila Anderson
Referral Group Incorporated - East Brunswick, NJ
The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133

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

Nov 22, 2012 04:44 AM #4
Rainmaker
488,848
Christine Bohn
RE/MAX Professionals - Gainesville, FL
Realtor, Gainesville FL

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!

Nov 22, 2012 04:57 AM #5
Ambassador
981,386
Amanda and Jared Christiansen, YOUR Fort Wayne Realtors
Century 21 Bradley (260)704-0843 - Fort Wayne, IN
Century 21 Bradley.

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

Nov 22, 2012 04:58 AM #6
Rainmaker
1,277,012
Richie Alan Naggar Author PEARLS SERIES of books
People first then business! Ran Right Realty Riverside, Ca - Riverside, CA
on LIFE and LOVE plus Real Estate too!

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

Nov 22, 2012 05:22 AM #7
Rainmaker
566,066
Corinne Guest
Barrington Realty Company - Barrington, IL
Barrington's Country Suburban Home Matchmaker

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.

Nov 22, 2012 05:27 AM #8
Rainmaker
893,958
Michael Setunsky
Michael's Commercial LLC - Woodbridge, VA
Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA

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?

Nov 22, 2012 05:30 AM #9
Rainmaker
369,568
Nina Hollander
RE/MAX Executive Realty/Charlotte, NC - Charlotte, NC
Your Charlotte/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Area Realtor

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.

Nov 22, 2012 05:30 AM #10
Rainmaker
656,151
Wayne and Jean Marie Zuhl
Hallmark Realtors - Clark, NJ
The Last Names You'll Ever Need in Real Estate

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

Nov 22, 2012 05:32 AM #11
Rainer
213,286
Gloria Laughton Allston
COLDWELL BANKER/PRINCETON - Princeton, NJ
GREEN, SFR

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.   

Nov 22, 2012 05:49 AM #12
Rainmaker
199,941
Olga Simoncelli
Veritas Prime Real Estate - New Fairfield, CT
Broker/Owner Veritas Prime, Candlewood Lake Area

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.

Nov 22, 2012 05:58 AM #13
Rainmaker
581,827
Than Maynard
Coldwell Banker Heart of Oklahoma - Purcell, OK
Broker - Licensed to List & Sell - 405-990-8862

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.

Nov 22, 2012 06:15 AM #14
Rainmaker
192,406
Brian Kuhns
Coldwell Banker Roth Wehrly Graber - Fort Wayne, IN
Fort Wayne Real Estate by Brian Kuhns

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

Nov 22, 2012 06:19 AM #15
Rainmaker
1,229,975
Al & Peggy Cunningham Brokers, Brampton Ontario Homes For Sale 905-450-5500
RE/MAX Realty Services Inc. - Brampton, ON

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.

Nov 22, 2012 06:25 AM #16
Ambassador
1,649,716
Fernando Herboso - Broker for Maxus Realty Group
Maxus Realty Group - Broker 301-246-0001 - Gaithersburg, MD
301-246-0001 Serving Maryland, DC and Northern VA

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

Nov 22, 2012 06:25 AM #17
Rainmaker
260,548
Mike & Eve Alexander
Buyers Broker of Florida - Windermere, FL
Exclusively Representing ONLY Orlando Home Buyers

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

Nov 22, 2012 06:27 AM #18
Rainmaker
126,974
Chuck Mixon
The Keyes Company - Cutler Bay, FL
Cutler Bay Specialist, GRI, CDPE, BPOR

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.

Nov 22, 2012 06:42 AM #19
Rainer
279,819
Jeff Pearl
RE/MAX Distinctive / LIC in VA - Leesburg, 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 #.

Nov 22, 2012 07:04 AM #20
Ambassador
1,541,124
Tammy Lankford
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Your Lake Sinclair Expert (706-485-9668)

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.

Nov 22, 2012 07:04 AM #21
Rainmaker
553,078
Gary Frimann
Eagle Ridge Realty / Signature Homes & Estates - Gilroy, CA
California Broker and REALTOR

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.

Nov 22, 2012 07:14 AM #22
Rainmaker
795,207
Mike Cooper
Winchester Real Estate Sales, Cornerstone Business Group Inc - Winchester, VA
Your Winchester, VA Real Estate Pro

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.

Nov 22, 2012 07:57 AM #23
Rainmaker
677,094
Mary Yonkers
Alan Kells 1-814-881-7548 - Erie, PA
Erie/PA Real Estate Instructor

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

Nov 22, 2012 08:01 AM #24
Rainmaker
850,922
J. Philip Faranda
J. Philip Faranda (J. Philip R.E. LLC) Westchester County NY - Briarcliff Manor, NY
Broker-Owner

Penny wise pound foolish

Nov 22, 2012 08:23 AM #25
Rainmaker
469,013
Andrea Bedard
Thompson Company, REALTORS - Silver Spring, MD
M.A.; REALTOR Silver Spring, MD and beyond

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.

Nov 22, 2012 08:44 AM #26
Rainer
127,502
Jon Karlen
Finish Line Realty - Shelbyville & Louisville Ky Real Estate - Shelbyville, KY
Louisville & Shelbyville Kentucky 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?

Nov 22, 2012 08:44 AM #27
Ambassador
1,010,462
Harry F. D'Elia
Precision Real Estate Inc. - Phoenix, AZ
Investor , Mentor, CSSN, Radio Coach, REOs, ABR

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.

Nov 22, 2012 09:00 AM #28
Rainmaker
340,163
Brian Rugg
Rugg Realty LLC Sun City Texas 512-966-3200 - Georgetown, TX
Sun City TX Real Estate - Georgetown, TX Real Est

Hello Richard:

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

Nov 22, 2012 09:04 AM #29
Ambassador
1,848,826
Jeff Dowler CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
Carlsbad CA Homes for Sale (760) 840-1360

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

Nov 22, 2012 10:04 AM #30
Rainmaker
1,287,647
Carla Muss-Jacobs, Principal Broker/Owner
BuyersAgentPortland.com | (503) 810-7192 Portland Metro Exclusive Buyers Agent | 100% Buyer Representation ~ 100% o... - Portland, OR
Buyer Focused ~ Buyer Results

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

Nov 22, 2012 10:21 AM #31
Ambassador
1,199,267
Paul Henderson
RE/MAX Professionals. - Tacoma, WA
I always put my clients first in any transaction!

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

Nov 22, 2012 10:36 AM #32
Rainmaker
1,164,455
Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

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

Nov 22, 2012 11:22 AM #33
Rainmaker
233,579
David Grbich
Ventana Coastal Properties - www.FindCARealEstate.com - San Juan Capistrano, CA
Orange County Real Estate - 949-500-0484

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

Nov 22, 2012 12:13 PM #34
Rainmaker
198,017
Sharon Kowitz
Fonville Morisey-CRS-SRES-ABR-GRI-E-Pro-CREN - Cary, NC
Cary, NC Relocation Specialist ~ Buying or Selling

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! 

Nov 22, 2012 03:17 PM #35
Rainmaker
318,234
Ernie Steele
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Homesale Realty - Lebanon, PA
Lebanon, PA Real Estate 717-273-3774

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.

Nov 22, 2012 04:08 PM #36
Ambassador
1,258,050
Erica Ramus
Erica Ramus - Ramus Realty Group - Pottsville, PA - Pottsville, PA
MRE, Schuylkill County PA Real Estate

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

Nov 22, 2012 04:53 PM #37
Ambassador
1,232,920
Tammie White
Benchmark Realty, LLC (615) 495-0752 or www.TWRealtyGroup.net - Franklin, TN
Franklin TN, South of Nashville

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

Nov 22, 2012 05:17 PM #38
Rainmaker
190,143
Gregory Bain
Mezzina Real Estate & Insurance - Little Egg Harbor, NJ

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.

Nov 22, 2012 05:26 PM #39
Rainmaker
655,512
Evelyn Kennedy
Gallagher & Lindsey, Alameda, California - Alameda, CA
Alameda, Real Estate, Alameda, CA

Rich:

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

Nov 22, 2012 05:31 PM #40
Ambassador
1,565,339
Christine Donovan
Donovan Blatt Realty - Costa Mesa, CA
Broker/Attorney 800-610-7253 DRE01267479 - Costa M
Richard - I dont know how you can effectively sell real estate without being a member of MLS.
Nov 22, 2012 06:32 PM #41
Rainmaker
395,181
Pete X-Investment to Luxury, Huntington Beach, CA -GRI-MCNE 714.459.2017 OCLister.com
X Group Real Estate Advocates - Huntington Beach, CA
Outstanding Agent Referrals-Nationwide

Is he really an agent?

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

Nov 22, 2012 06:54 PM #42
Rainmaker
541,960
Ginger Harper
Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage - Southport, NC
Your Southport~Oak Island Agent!

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

Nov 22, 2012 07:24 PM #43
Rainmaker
1,168,251
Cheryl Ritchie
RE/MAX Leading Edge www.GoldenResults.com - Huntingtown, MD
Southern Maryland 301-980-7566
I would think it might not be an agent...maybe someone posing as an agent to get access.
Nov 22, 2012 09:04 PM #44
Rainmaker
1,085,773
Wallace S. Gibson, CPM
Gibson Management Group, Ltd. - Charlottesville, VA
LandlordWhisperer

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.

Nov 23, 2012 04:46 AM #45
Rainmaker
1,779,330
William Feela
WHISPERING PINES REALTY - North Branch, MN
Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No.

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

Nov 23, 2012 06:38 PM #46
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Richard Iarossi

Crofton MD Real Estate, Annapolis MD Real Estate
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