Where Real Estate Gets Its Dirt

2020 be like…

I almost passed out laughing when I first read this. Thanks Art, I needed that!

DOM during a Pandemic

MLSs Dealing With The Pandemic: Virtual Open Houses and DOM

“The problem, however, is that pausing DOM distorts the accuracy of the data in the system. Years from now when the pandemic is hopefully a distant memory, we should be able to look back at the data and see the effect the pandemic had on days on market. If we see some markets where there’s no effect (because DOM was paused) and other markets where it wasn’t, that’s going to create a misleading picture. Another reason not to pause DOM is that no competitive advantage or disadvantage is created for any agent, the pandemic is impacting everyone the same. Lastly, the way DOM works in Flexmls, pausing DOM is way more complicated than one might think, so not messing with it really helps us out, too, and creates less of a chance for problems.”

The drama around “Days On Market” never ends. I think this post from FBS makes a good point of why DOM should not be ‘paused”. Good to hear CRMLS decided not to pause DOM.


High praise from Mr. Brad Inman on our new Cloud Investor Connect feature in Cloud CMA.

In real estate’s tech platform race, I’m betting on an underdog as brokerages square off against Zillow and Redfin, small startup W+R Studios’ Cloud CMA could be the viral hit like this summer’s Shiggy dance

But I got my eye on a third potential and fledgling platform coming out of nowhere by two likeable entrepreneurs who have been building real estate software for 25 years. Greg Robertson and Dan Woolley dub their company W+R Studios. Its signature product is Cloud CMA, which does comparative market analysis for agents to deliver to home sellers.

It’s software does 260,000 CMAs a month.

Here is the hook that could propel their company. The southern California firm added a new instant offer feature to their product last month, so when presenting the CMA the agent can also point the home seller to an instant offer alternative from investors and iBuyers.

It is being tested in Los Angeles with signs that it might be a breakaway product — maybe even a platform.

You can imagine most agents in the country using the software someday with all of the big Wall Street iBuyers and local investors participating on the Cloud CMA platform. It sports an easy to deploy API for investors and a friendlier-than-Mr. Rogers user experience.

Nice way to start a week. Dan and I want to thank Brad for his kind words (no pressure!). And also Art Carter and CRMLS for serving as our first “sandbox” of sorts. Plus our other MLS partners that have helped Cloud CMA to grow in to one of real estate’s most popular products.

So far our tests in Southern California for the past two weeks have gone better than expected. Agents love the experience, and are giving us great feedback. I’m happy to share some of our results, just contact me directly.

What were you doing in the 80s?

If you are Rob Larson, CIO of CRMLS, then you were playing bass in a hair band. My only question is, why is his left hand in his pocket? ????

“Sandicor” adieu

The Litigation Between Sandicor Shareholders Has Ended

The settlement was drafted and reviewed by attorneys representing each respective Association Of REALTORS®, Sandicor® and CRMLS. All parties involved support the details of the settlement. With this resolution, NSDCAR and PSAR will join California Regional MLS (CRMLS), and GSDAR will obtain its MLS through an entity separate but owned by GSDAR, named San Diego Multiple Listing Service, Inc. (SDMLS). The name Sandicor®, as a distinct brand in the San Diego marketplace, will cease to exist. Each Association has acted with the intention of providing its membership with the most valuable MLS products and customer service.

To ensure all members receive open access to as much information as possible, all three Associations have agreed to share data across both MLSs, maintaining the same county wide coverage there is currently. MLS Subscribers will continue accessing MLS data and have the same level of access and user experience through Paragon, the software platform San Diego-area MLS users have been using for over three years. All members will continue to have the same look and feel that Sandicor® members have grown accustomed to, with no disruption of service.

It unfortunate this took as long as it did. Anyway you look at it it’s a huge win for CRMLS. Having the name Sandicor still around would have been problematic. And with the addition of the members of NSDCAR and PSAR, if my math is correct, CRMLS membership is just shy of 100,000. Impressive.

Industry vet, Dottie Shanley retires

Art Carter, CEO of CRMLS

““I offer my best wishes to industry veteran Dottie Shanley as she enters retirement. Dottie served the MLS/AOR industry as a customer care specialist for 27 years, beginning her career as a bookkeeper with
Buena Park AOR. After Buena Park AOR merged with North Orange County and Pacific West, Dottie
began to get involved with other avenues of the industry. She learned many departments, including the
membership aspect of the industry, before moving into the MLS department. In 2000 Dottie made a
move to SoCal MLS, where she started on the Customer Care team. In 2011, SoCal merged with CRMLS,
and today she hangs up her headset from CRMLS as one of the most fearless and dedicated customer
service representatives around. Dottie is looking forward to retirement and plans to spend more time on
her hobbies, including playing bingo. Congratulations, and thanks for many years of outstanding

I’m a sucker for these announcements. Anyone devoting as much time to this business deserves recognition, and Dottie has seen it all!

Art Carter talks data consolidation

“If the MLS industry had a face, that face would have a facial tick – because it’s 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 such 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, Inc. (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 they 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’ 100 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 CALRED
The history of CARETS
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% 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:

CRMLS Website

Tipping point for Cali MLS consolidation?

Gregg Larson, of Clareity Consulting, thinks so….
MLS Consolidation in Southern California – Finally?

“I recently had the privilege of being on the “MLS Symposium” program to talk about MLS trends and the future of MLS held in northern San Diego and I saw first-hand how ready the brokers there are for their MLS to merge with CRMLS. Normally I don’t discuss these types of meetings on the blog, but between the news stories about the legal conflict in San Diego and the video of the event that has been released, it seems like the right thing to do.”

The video put together by Jim Klinge (local San Diego REALTOR) is a must watch.

Slow and steady…

Message from Art Carter from August Partners on Vimeo.

Andrea Brambila reporting for Inman News.
The nation’s biggest MLS gets even biggerCalifornia Regional MLS takes another step toward becoming a statewide entity

“As part of their agreements with CRMLS, the North Bay Association of Realtors and the Marin Association of Realtors will be offering CRMLS’s MLS service to their combined 4,500 members. The North Bay association covers Sonoma, Napa, Lake and Mendocino counties while the Marin association covers Marin County.

Members of the two associations currently belong to broker-owned MLS Bay Area Real Estate Information Service (BAREIS). Brokers and their agents will have the option of staying with BAREIS, switching to CRMLS, or belonging to both MLSs.”

It’s interesting to see CRMLS take a less dogmatic approach to their goal of a state-wide MLS, they just try to find a way to win, market by market.

Art Carter

“Given the slow-moving nature of politics, we absolutely want to respect local marketplaces’ wishes, but we do feel the whole entire state should be served by a single database that contains every listing in the state of California.”

He believes it will happen someday. “Whether it’s through our efforts or some of the other initiatives going on, I believe at some point the brokerage community will get what they want and need out of aggregated data,” he said.”

I want to believe that brokers see this, but listening the various Upstream panels it seems that aggregating all market data is something that might be a casualty if half the market is on Upstream and other is not.

Art again…

“There is a better way. There is the possibility of tearing down these borders. We’re not going to go anyplace that we’re not asked, but I think brokers and agents up and down the state need to know there are solutions to the pains that they’re facing and if they find those solutions viable, they need to talk to the leadership of their local associations,” he said.

I still think the ItsMyBusiness campaign is well executed, its more about “listing access” than CRMLS. Smart.

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