Where Real Estate Gets Its Dirt

Errol Samuelson shows us how its done.

This is a cyclical business. You don’t want to burn any bridges. I think a lot of vendors don’t fully appreciate this notion. Two examples come to mind. When ARG pulled their listings from Zillow and Trulia you immediately saw that the You Tube site, where ARG posted a video, was filled with comments from Trulia and Zillow reps denouncing the move and going in to full on spin mode. Zillow took it a step farther by contacting ARG clients directly (through mail).

A few months ago ARMLS decided to move from iMapp to Realist. The members didn’t like the decision, a great thing for iMapp you would believe? Nope. iMapp decided to fan the fire instead of playing the role of peacekeeper. They might have won all or part of the business back but their actions made it almost impossible for ARMLS to do so.

Not exactly shining moments for any of these companies.

Now lets take a look at this recent hub-hub with Edina deciding to remove their listings from Realtor.com. Personally this move from Edina is a head scratcher. I think they have some valid points regarding accuracy, non-mls data commingling, branding and lead forms. But none of these concerns are a factor for Edina’s listings on Realtor.com. (My prediction is that they will be back on Realtor.com before the end of the year.)

But maybe this nonsense can serve as a “teachable moment” for the rest of us. The lesson today comes from Errol Samuelson from MOVE, Inc. His response to Edina is exactly how to handle the situation. If you haven’t read it yet go read it now.

Here’s an excerpt:

However, these things said, I want to be absolutely clear: we respect Edina Realty’s decision.
We’re not going to play games with their agents, or try to compromise their standing with consumers in their market.”


  1. I could not agree more. I guess a little bit of the REALTOR code of ethics rubbed off on MOVE over the years. Perhaps in time some of the newcomers will understand that this industry picks friends quickly, and makes enemies just a quickly.

    I asked Zillow about the letter thing – they denied it. Perhaps it was someone else.

    I can tell you that brokers will never forget efforts made by some publishers to contact sellers and agents disparaging their syndication choices. Never.

  2. Hi, Bob Bemis from Zillow here.

    Just to confirm Victor’s question and comment:
    Many have speculated about Zillow’s reaction to the ARG video announcement in January and there have been some urban myths created around Zillow’s supposed actions. To clarify for everyone, despite earlier and oft-repeated anecdotes to the contrary, Zillow never contacted owners of the properties in any way or through any channel. To do so would have been a violation of our own published terms of use of information in Zillow’s database. Zillow did contact agents of ARG through email, as part of an ongoing promotional campaign explaining the benefits of posting listings on Zillow. Zillow believes strongly that the decision to syndicate is the broker’s alone to make and fully respects the decision of any broker to participate or not.

    We would welcome the opportunity to discuss the pros and cons of strategic listing syndication with any broker who is grappling with this most significant management issue. We believe that through such conversations, everyone wins.

Sponsored By Lone Wolf