Where Real Estate Gets Its Dirt

MOVE and N.A.R. get it together, finally.

Lots going on in the online real estate space these past two months.

Cyberhomes was bought by Listingbook, two major portals are looking to change vendors, Zillow announced new leadership, and now NAR and MOVE have agreed to make changes to the Realtor.com operating agreement.

The operating agreement between N.A.R and Realtor.com is about 14 years old. Waaaaaay before Zillow, Trulia and others who have entered the fray. Now with new leaders; Steve Berkowitz on the Realtor.com side and Dale Stinton on the N.A.R. side they have finally agreed that things needed to change.

About time, if you ask me. Not sure why this took so long but it always seem to me that the operating agreement made Errol Samuelson and his team at Realtor.com fight aggregation sites with one hand tied behind its back. It will be fun to see what kind of punches they are going to throw next.

The syndication play is also very interesting. I wonder what this means for sites like Point2 and ListHub.

Never a dull moment…

Full Press Release below:


NAR and Move Pave Way for Innovation With Updated Operating Agreement
CAMPBELL, Calif., Sept 16, 2010 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ —
The National Association of Realtors(R) (NAR) and Move, Inc. (Nasdaq: MOVE), the leader in online real estate, today announced recent discussions related to their 14-year operating agreement have resulted in an updated agreement intended to drive more competitive and rapid innovations to their flagship site, Realtor.com(R).
The discussions between the two organizations revolved around bringing clarity and alignment to key issues surrounding site innovations, content modifications, and approvals so Move and NAR can drive faster and more competitive improvements on Realtor.com.
“NAR is pleased to continue and strengthen our agreement with Move. Updating the operating agreement underlines both NAR’s and Move’s commitment to ensure that real estate professionals remain as the first point of contact in the real estate transaction,” said NAR President Vicki Cox Golder, owner of Vicki L. Cox & Association, Tucson, Ariz.
“We’re very pleased with the outcome of these discussions with our partner NAR. We’re looking forward to a stronger and more collaborative relationship guided by an updated agreement enabling Move to drive more competitive innovations on Realtor.com that will enhance consumer’s search experience while empowering Realtors(R) with a greater range of valuable marketing services,” said Move, Inc. Chief Executive Officer, Steve Berkowitz. “We entered the discussions seeking clarity and alignment yet achieved much more as we quickly found vast common ground related to our mutual objective to connect consumers with Realtors. The internet and competitive environment have evolved dramatically since our original agreement was crafted in 1996. Under this updated agreement, Move is now positioned to usher in a new era of innovation. The industry looks to us as the category leader in today’s fast-paced technology-driven market place.”
The updated operating agreement now provides provisions intended to streamline the development and delivery process for improvements to site features and functionalities, as well as clarifies certain areas of content now requiring NAR approval. As a result, Move anticipates it can make innovations to the Realtor.com site more rapidly to remain at the forefront of advancement in today’s highly competitive and information-driven environment.
“The agreement continues to ensure certain content protections for real estate brokers in regards to property listed on Realtor.com,” said Dale Stinton, chief executive officer of NAR. “In addition, and as a result of these discussions, approval provisions were added to the agreement that reflect and reaffirm both organizations’ commitment to ensure that brokers and Multiple Listing Services (MLSs) remain in control of their proprietary listing data and related information that displays on Realtor.com.”
In addition to the discussions surrounding the operating agreement, NAR and Move discussed the benefits Move can deliver to real estate professionals, MLSs, and consumers by syndicating listing data content to third parties such as online portals, real estate listing sites and other designated destinations. As a result, Move received consent from NAR to syndicate listing data content in accordance with each data content provider’s [MLSs and brokers] permission and instructions.
“Move remains committed to delivering the most valuable online real estate experience to real estate professionals, advertisers and consumers by remaining focused on continually evolving our products and services to meet their diverse needs and expectations,” comments Errol Samuelson, chief revenue officer for Move, Inc., and president of Realtor.com. “By updating our operating agreement with NAR and expanding the relationship to enable a more competitive approach to how we operate the business, we can fully leverage our leadership position to deliver the right products and services with the most comprehensive and freshest data content available in a manner that successfully connects consumers with real estate professionals and advertisers at the right time.”
The amended operating agreement between Move and NAR was filed on Thursday, September 16, 2010 as an 8K filing.

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