MLS & Associations

Listing Bits: What it’s like to be in the MLS consolidation trenches

CEO of California Regional Multiple Listing Service Art Carter is leading the data sharing revolution in Southern California

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“If the MLS industry had a face, that face would have a facial tick — because its always threatened by something or someone.”

With such constant scrutiny, you’ve got to have a pretty thick skin in the MLS business.

And if your goal is to consolidate — let’s say the listings for the entire state of California — you’d better be even tougher.

Today’s guest on Listing Bits faces across-the-board resistance daily as he works to convince real estate professionals that giving up a little local control is worth it in the long run.

Art Carter is the CEO of California Regional Multiple Listing Service (CRMLS) providing products and services to over 82,000 subscribers.

CRMLS works to connect real estate professionals throughout the state of California via access to the most data at the lowest cost possible.

Carter spent nine years working for the Pacific West Association of Realtors as it pushed the envelope on innovation and brought the association world to a new level before moving to CRMLS in 2005.

For the past 11 years he has been dedicated to making a difference in the daily lives of real estate professionals.

He is best-known for leading the data share revolution in Southern California.

Carter has been named one of Inman News’ Most Influential Real Estate Leaders twice and he is a member of the Dr. Almon R. “Bud” Smith, RCE, AE Leadership Society in recognition of dedicated service and commitment to advancing the association management profession.

Listen in as he shares the progress CRMLS has made toward listings consolidation in California.

What’s discussed:  

  • The disparity between consumers and agents brokers when it comes to data access
  • How agents and brokers respond to the prospect of listings consolidation
  • The unraveling of calREDD
  • The history of CARETS (California Real Estate Technology Services)
  • The advantages of data shares over an aggregated database
  • Why CRMLS seeks to consolidate listings for the entire state of California
  • The politics preventing consolidation
  • Where the resistance to consolidation comes from
  • The progress CRMLS is making toward consolidation
    • From 21,013 members in 2005 to 82,037 today
    • Working to grow another 10 percent this year
  • The benefit of implementing a “system of choice”
    • Eliminates the need to convert
    • Allows agents to access data with the tool they prefer
  • Solutions for the permissioning issue
    • Unified contracts
    • Online process
  • Why the MLS industry itself should resolve the permissioning issue
  • The primary purpose of the MTP Project
  • Carter’s advice for MLSs seeking to consolidate
    • Build relationships
    • Consider every “no” a “not yet”

Connect with Art Carter via the CRMLS website or Twitter