Where Real Estate Gets Its Dirt

Looking for a new gig?

MLS Operations Specialist – The Gulf Coast Multiple Listing Service 

“The Gulf Coast Multiple Listing Service is seeking an experienced MLS Operations Specialist to join our team in Mobile, Al. The GCMLS provides service to over 2,400 MLS participants and subscribers. The MLS Operations Specialist is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the MLS and works closely with our MLS Compliance Specialist. The MLS Operations Specialist is responsible for the operation, training, delivery and maintenance of all multiple listing services (MLS) and supporting products. Data integrity is of the utmost importance so a clear understanding and enforcement of MLS Rules and Policies is required. This position reports to the CEO and serves as a staff liaison to the MLS Board. Some travel and extended hours may be required. Ideal candidates will have a minimum of 2 years of MLS experience.”

Mobile Area Association of REALTORS

The find out about this job or post a job, please visit the Vendor Alley Job Board.

NARc

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This Insta was pretty funny.

Doing the right thing

FTC Sues Adobe, The Legal Question, The Value of Doing Right

“More generally, what bothers me about this case is the moral component; I assume this entire purchase flow has been A/B tested to death, and that the current configuration makes the most money, at least across whatever timeline is being considered. However, did anyone at Adobe stop and consider why that might be? Is there any answer other than, some number of users won’t be careful enough and will buy the wrong plan, and then get hit with a large fee, which will either drive revenue on its own or convince the user to begrudgingly not cancel, driving more revenue going forward? Even leaving aside the long-term hit to the brand’s reputation, what about doing the right thing?”

Ben Thompson, Stratechery

Stratechery is probably my favorite newsletter/podcast. And I love the Dithering podcast he does with Apple nerd John Gruber. Worth the money. Ben Thompson is a business strategist and his “aggregation theory” has multiple ramifications in real estate. John Gruber’s blog Daring Fireball was a big inspiration when I started Vendor Alley.

This article struck me in a couple ways. You should go read it. I think one of the main things that made Cloud CMA so successful was the ability for customers to “self-serve”, meaning they didn’t have to book a demo with a sales person to see pricing and order the product directly. Basically, customers could just go to the website, put a credit card in and boom start using Cloud CMA right away. Cheers to Dan Woolley for making this complicated process seem so easy. So I can say that I have been a part of the design process of close of 100 different landing pages in regard to pricing. So I know all the ways and the “dark patterns” that some companies used to trick their customers in to signing up without really knowing what they are signing up for. This also Includes hiding/burying the cancel button. In fact when Dan and I started W+R Studios one of our main tenets was we were going to make it easy for agents to cancel their subscription. We needed that trust so if we came up with a new product they would be willing to try us again.

We weren’t always perfect, it can be a tough balance, but I can say that it is something we were very conscious of, doing the right thing.

So that got me thinking. We have all been struggling with #NARsettlement. Transparency, commissions, concessions, buyers agreements, touring agreements, etc. I think largely centered around how close to the status quo can we keep things?

So if you are a real estate broker/agent and you are entering in to a business relationship with a homebuyer, what would be the right thing to do in regard to disclosure? Can we all work backwards from that?

Industry Relations podcast: The Disconnect in Interpretation with Ed Zorn of CRMLS

Are you struggling to understand the NAR settlement agreement and its implications for real estate transactions? Joining us in this thought-provoking episode is Ed Zorn, VP & General Counsel for CRMLS. Rob, Greg, and Ed talk about the disconnect between NAR’s understanding and other lawyers’ interpretations, and what it means for brokers and agents. They dive into topics such as the risk of coordinated action, liability concerns, and the role of MLSs in enforcing rules. 

They also discuss the concessions field in MLS listings and its potential impact on real estate transactions. This episode is packed with valuable insights on how to avoid potential pitfalls and stay compliant in this ever-changing landscape.

Connect with Rob and Greg: 

Rob’s Website

Greg’s Website

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Zillow settles with MLSs

Zillow, MLSs reach settlement in ShowingTime lawsuit

“A court document filed on June 13 stated that Zillow Group and the defendants — Arizona Regional Multiple Listing Service, Wisconsin’s Metro Multiple Listing Service, and MLS Aligned, an MLS collaboration which developed Aligned Showings — have reached an agreement in principle that will result in the dismissal of claims once finalized.”

Real Estate News

Zillow should have never sued their own customers in the first place. One the worse business decisions this space has ever seen.

Looking for a new gig?

FMLS – Product Support Analyst

“The Product Support Analyst is responsible for evaluating current FMLS products, identifying areas for improvement, and assisting with developing internal products to meet member needs.”

FMLS, Sandy Springs, GA

FMLS – Data Integrity Representative

“The Data Integrity Representative is responsible for administrating Data Integrity compliance by the set Rules and Regulations to ensure data accuracy. This position responds to all phone, email, and Live chat queries including escalation calls, and helps resolve the relevant data violations.”

FMLS, Sandy Springs, GA

FMLS – Marketing Specialist

“The Marketing Specialist plays an integral role in developing and executing marketing plans designed to expand FMLS brand awareness, promote our products, and grow the company strategically. “

FMLS, Sandy Springs, GA

Addresses in Japan

Japanese addresses: No street names. Block numbers.

“Mailing addresses in Japan, after naming the province and city, are a series of three numbers: district number, block number, building number. That’s how the building is found. No street names.”

Derek Sivers

I thought the nerdy readers of Vendor Alley would love this.

Looking for a new gig?

FMLS – Product Support Analyst

“The Product Support Analyst is responsible for evaluating current FMLS products, identifying areas for improvement, and assisting with developing internal products to meet member needs.”

FMLS, Sandy Springs, GA

FMLS – Data Integrity Representative

“The Data Integrity Representative is responsible for administrating Data Integrity compliance by the set Rules and Regulations to ensure data accuracy. This position responds to all phone, email, and Live chat queries including escalation calls, and helps resolve the relevant data violations.”

FMLS, Sandy Springs, GA

FMLS – Marketing Specialist

“The Marketing Specialist plays an integral role in developing and executing marketing plans designed to expand FMLS brand awareness, promote our products, and grow the company strategically. “

FMLS, Sandy Springs, GA

To find out about these jobs and more please visit the Vendor Alley Job Board.


A new home search portal swoops in to the mix

Flyhomes Launches World’s First AI-Powered Home Search Portal

“Developed over the last two years, ‘Flyhomes AI,’ is a proprietary technology which brings the first conversational real estate search and research to the market, dramatically expanding the amount of information home shoppers can find online.”

Flyhomes

The company has some legit pedigree too.

“The technology integration was overseen by ZeroDown co-founders, Laks Srini and Abhijeet Dwivedi, who joined Flyhomes as chief technology officer (CTO) and chief growth officer (CGO), respectively. Srini and Dwivedi previously served as Co-founder/CTO and as COO at SaaS HR platform, Zenefits.”

Flyhomes

One of ZeroDown’s major investors is Sam Altman, CEO of OpenAI, the creators of ChatGPT.

The new portal will be live in 28 states and Washington D.C., which they claim covers 75% of the listings (I think that sounds right). I got an early sneak peak at the site and it’s pretty rad. Along with the typical portal things you can also ask it questions like

“Show me homes in Los Angeles that have recently dropped in price”
“Provide me an overview of recent t sales in 90210”
“Show me homes in 92648 that are having an open house this weekend.”

To me this could be what a future MLS system interface could look like.

I’m hoping to have someone from Flyhomes on my podcast, I’ve got a ton of questions about their business model, and how they plan to expand coverage.

But my biggest take away is just when we thought that there was no innovation left in the listing portal space, a new competitor enters the ring. Congrats flyhomes! Can’t wait to see more!

Stuart White, CEO of Realtracs, on why the MLS will continue

A couple of things from Stuart’s opinion post on Inman News I thought were interesting.

“The network effect has provided a dependable listing and buying network — creating a singular destination where an area’s buyers and listings are in the same place. The network effect has always been more important to consumers (and professionals) than publishing compensation and will continue to benefit consumers (and professionals) after the settlement. “

Stuart White

We don’t really think about how much the network effect matters in our business. We are just so used to it.

“MLSs must continue to make platforms easier to use. Designing an accessible and intuitive interface with user-friendly features allows seamless navigation, as both real estate professionals and consumers will be seeking enhanced productivity and efficiency. By making their products more accessible, MLSs reinforce their role as indispensable tools and empower users to achieve their goals with ease.”

Stuart White

Making MLS system easier to use has been a thing since I started in the business in 1992. I believe the industry has done a good job with point solutions based on features of MLS systems, but coming up with a new take on a MLS system itself is something I think about a lot.

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