A recent piece in Forbes claims MLSs are not relevant to buyers because they have other places to go for listing information and are doing more of the work that agents used to do themselves and that new technology like big data and AI is doing the work of finding buyers outside of the MLS. Is that accurate? Not if you know how real estate data gets to buyers in the first place and how real estate transactions work in the real world, MLS execs say.
If you ask an MLS exec what an MLS is, he or she will likely answer that it’s an organization dedicated to providing real estate broker participants with a platform to share listing data and facilitate the offer of cooperation and compensation. That’s not wrong. It’s a definition that the NAR and the Council of MLSs agree on. The problem is that this definition doesn’t even begin to describe what it means to be an MLS. Not even close.