A large regional multiple listing service in Texas just got bigger, adding a Realtor association from another state for the first time.
Dallas-based North Texas Real Estate Information Systems (NTREIS) is already one of the largest MLSs in the U.S. with 42,000 agent, broker and appraiser subscribers belonging to 14 shareholder Realtor associations in the North Texas region. Now, the MLS has added a 15th shareholder association, the Shreveport, Louisiana-based Northwest Louisiana Association of Realtors (NWLAR), which has more than 1,000 subscribers.
NWLAR currently operates its own MLS on CoreLogic’s Matrix platform. NTREIS also uses the Matrix platform and anticipates that the merger of NWLAR’s MLS data, including historical data, into NTREIS’ database to be complete by the end of the year, according to Cindy Miller, NTREIS’ COO.
The consolidation of the MLSs gives NWLAR’s subscribers access to real estate listings in the 50 or so counties that NTREIS currently covers (of the 254 counties total in Texas) and NTREIS’ current subscribers access to listings in the parishes that NWLAR covers, which are primarily the Caddo and Bossier parishes on the Texas and Louisiana border, according to Miller.
The parishes are not contiguous with the primary counties of the MLS’s current Texas shareholder associations, but NTREIS has listings throughout the state, she added.
“Market areas are organic and do not always follow state boundaries, so we did not view that as an obstacle,” Miller told Inman via email. “Whenever we have brought on a new association, we review our policies and our fields to see what we need to accommodate, but we do not expect major changes for any subscribers.”
“The NWLAR subscribers will see some changes in format, have access to some new product offerings and will continue doing business as usual,” she added. “Applicable license laws in each state will govern the business practices of participants, but they will have easy access to a broader range of properties using the tools with which they are most familiar.”
NWLAR’s members will also get access to NTREIS’ products and services, including Remine Pro and W+R Studios’ Cloud Agent Suite. And current NTREIS subscribers in the East Texas area who hold real estate licenses in both states will now have easy access to listings across state boundaries, the MLS said in a press release.
“As the workforce grows more mobile, market areas will continue to expand and geographic boundaries should not hinder that growth” said Johnny Mowad, 2020 President of NTREIS, in a statement.
NTREIS operates on a wholesale business model in which the MLS contracts with vendors for services and wholesales them to shareholder associations who then sell them directly to their members.
“Our decentralized model is attractive to associations that wish to provide a high level of Realtor services to their membership but have another entity to do the heavy lifting of the technology and data services of a multiple listing service,” said John Holley, CEO of NTREIS, in a statement.
Theresa Miller, 2020 President of NWLAR, said the association “has continually strived to provide the best services available in this ever-changing environment.”
“Looking toward the future and growth of our association has always been our goal and this partnership with NTREIS offers our members a great opportunity,” she said in a statement.
In a blog post about the new shareholder deal, Victor Lund of real estate consulting firm WAV Group wrote, “From a strategic perspective, this is another example of regional MLSs broadening their perspective beyond state boundaries, a growth strategy that may have been born by Bright MLS (during the MRIS days).
“For years there has been talk of a national MLS — an idea that has little merit in my opinion,” he added. “But I do see a future in America where massive regional MLSs come together to serve huge chunks of markets and serve over 100,000 agents.”
Asked about its expansion plans and potentially becoming an MLS that serves so many agents, Miller said, “NTREIS is not seeking to become a ‘massive’ regional MLS, but the pace and expense of technology certainly favors more consolidation of MLS operations across the country. We seek to provide the best services for our participants; as their market reach expands, we expect our regional will expand to accommodate those needs whenever possible.”