It's time to end listing syndication abuse.
When real estate professionals create a new home listing in MLS, we
often authorize the sharing of that listing with third parties.
This process is known as listing syndication. Due to the poor
standards currently in place, the listing then enters the
proverbial “WILD WEST”.
Syndication has had a number of unintended consequences.
In fact, an entirely new industry has been created that is based on
EXPLOITATION of these listings.
As a result, everyone involved in the sales process -- home
sellers, prospective home buyers, real estate agents and brokers --
are HURT. The public is
Syndication sites hurt buyers and sellers.
Unless we pay syndication sites not to remove or obscure our
contact details from our listings, prospective home buyers are
directed to agents who are UNFAMILIAR
with the home, but who have paid for the lead. These agents are
then free to promote other homes or areas that they do know well.
The result is an epic fail. Buyers miss out on the best INFORMATION, and sellers miss out on
valuable showing OPPORTUNITIES.
Syndication sites hurt agents and brokers.
It's becoming a nightmare to manage our listings on the growing
number of syndication sites to which our MLS listings are
circulated. Unless we pay them, the syndication sites DIVERT leads and OMIT key data,
photos, or our contact information from our listings. These practices diminish the EFFECTIVENESS of our listings and
hurt our businesses.
Syndication sites manipulate and mishandle listing
Many syndication sites DELETE
or obscure key data from our listings, including home photos and
our contact information. Many falsely INFLATE their listing inventory. Some
even claim perpetual ownership of our listings' data, descriptions,
and photos. Some re-syndicate our listings to numerous sites that,
like them, lack ACCOUNTABILITY.
Yet syndication sites aim to hold us legally accountable.
Syndication sites require us to hold them HARMLESS if legal action results
from their use of our listing -- a listing they'll MANIPULATE unless we pay their fees.
Their actions DAMAGE our
listings and hurt the industry.
Syndication sites often mislead the public.
New MLS listings appear on these sites within DAYS of their entry into MLS, but
when the MLS status changes to unavailable, it can take MONTHS for syndication sites to
purge them. Why? Because syndication sites profit from selling
leads on homes, regardless of the home's actual availability.
Syndication sites profit from carefully placed ads on our listings
-- so careful, in fact, that prospective home buyers are often MISLED into believing they're
contacting an agent who is familiar with the home.
We're exacerbating the problem by
failing to act.
Many of us VOLUNTARILY supply
our listings to the syndication sites. We do so each time we select
the “ALLOW SYNDICATION”
option when we create a listing in MLS. Since we started
syndicating to them years ago, the syndication sites have REFINED their business models and
practices to INCREASE their
profits from MLS data. They changed. A royal mess has ensued.
Now it's time for us to fix the
We are raising awareness now. We're aiming to garner a critical
mass of agents and brokers to join us in a SOLUTION. Once we achieve membership
with at least 25% of listings nationwide, we'll have meaningful STRENGTH in numbers. As a coalition,
we'll be well-positioned to effectuate CHANGE,
to communicate persuasively with the syndication sites, and to
bring REFORM to the industry.
If the syndication sites don't reform,
we shouldn't syndicate to them.
If the syndication sites fail to reform themselves consistent with the
“Real Estate Professional's Bill of Rights,”
we'll remind agents and brokers their election to syndicate is VOLUNTARY. We'll work to make it EASIER for the industry to stop
syndicating to sites that don't employ best practices. We'll
explain to consumers why they should CARE.
Perhaps you share this vision? If so,
join us now.
If we unite, we can put an END
to syndication sites' abusive practices as they are known today. We
are now accepting registrations for membership in NAREP.
Registration is FREE. Joining
won't cost you a penny. Click here to register
now. Tell your colleagues. Read our blog. Follow us on Twitter and LIKE us on Facebook. We'll keep
you informed on our progress and the details of our plans. Let's STOP syndication abuse now!