Multiple Listing Services will soon be compelled to offer waivers to agents who want to opt out of their services.
The NAR Board of Directors voted to give agents more flexibility in MLS choice, expanded the criteria hearing panels should consider when local associations are vying for territorial rights, and many other considerations recommended by committees at the 2017 REALTORS® Conference & Expo.
One of the more contentious debates during the conference was over whether the association should adopt a Mandatory Waiver Policy, offering what many have nicknamed “MLS of Choice.” Where MLSs use a jurisdictional assessment option, they’ll no longer be allowed to compel participation by all agents of a real estate firm. Instead, such MLSs will be required to provide a nonuse waiver option to all licensees who pledge to not use the MLS’s services and can prove they are already affiliated with another MLS. The rule will go into effect on July 1, 2018. The rule also stipulates the use of the term “service area” in place of “jurisdiction” or “territory” to distinguish MLSs areas from association ones.
Other changes to MLS policies include giving brokers access to MLS sales data dating back to Jan. 1, 2012, rather than the current requirement of offering data going three years back. The board also voted to raise the minimum number of listings available to consumers searching an IDX feed or a VOW to 500 listings or 50 percent of the listings in an MLS database, whichever is less. Finally, the board voted to require MLSs to offer remote training and orientation options to participants. These changes go into effect Jan. 1.