is the MLS
A Consumer's Guide to the Multiple Listing Service®
Anyone who's had a passing
brush with the real estate market has seen or heard the term 'MLS®.' But few
consumers know exactly what the MLS® is, or understand the important role
it plays in the real estate industry.
The MLS® (Multiple
Listing Service®) is a complex information-sharing network created by
Realtors several decades ago to help the public buy and sell homes. When a Realtor
lists a property for sale, he or she completes a detailed data sheet describing
the home and submits the information to Real Estate Boards which manage the MLS®.
Board staff enter the information into a central MLS® computer databank, accessible
only to other Realtors.
The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV),
operates the MLS® locally, most of the eleven other Boards around B.C. operate
their own regional MLS® systems. Although managed separately, the systems
are linked via computer so Realtors can access listings in most other areas.
MLS® makes the real estate industry unique by allowing and encouraging
a high degree of cooperation among salespeople - much more so than in any other
industry. For example, if you're shopping for a car and you visit a local dealership,
the salesperson's goal is to sell you a car from his lot. He won't provide you
with information on cars available at other competing dealerships; you would have
to visit those on your own.
In the real estate industry, the opposite is
true. MLS® allows for cooperation between all Realtors, no matter which real
estate company they work for. Using the computerized MLS® system, your Realtor
will enter the criteria you want in a home and generate a list of all the homes
that meet your needs. These homes might be listed by agents from five, ten, or
twenty other companies - to your Realtor, it doesn't matter. Only properties not
listed with a Realtor ('For Sale by Owner') are not accessible on MLS®.
Before the computer era, the MLS® system was managed manually through
an immense amount of paperwork. Real Estate Boards printed daily 'listing sheets.'
While these catalogues still exist, they have largely been replaced by a high-speed
computer program that allows Realtors to check up-to-the-minute information on
every current listing.
This program provides Lower Mainland Realtors
with access to much more detailed information, such as room-by-room measurements
and specifics on the property condition, renovations, appliances, property zoning
and rental rates. Realtors can access the sales history of a home in order to
see how many times it has changed hands and at what prices.
information is available to the public through RealtyLink - the official, most
complete and up-to-date source for real estate listings, statistics and community
information for homebuyers and sellers. Available in two conveniently organized,
consumer friendly formats, RealtyLink - In Print and RealtyLink
- On Line.
& Tips for Successfully Selling Your Home
Out What Your Home is Worth...
the market is constantly changing, get an up to date evaluation.
You Sell Your Home Yourself... the important questions you need
Steps to Selling Your Home... find
out the most important steps in planning the sale of your home.
Your House Right... determining your "asking price" is the most
important step in preparing your house for sale.
Does Assessed Value Relate to the Market Value of Your Home? ... find
out the difference between the two.
is the MLS... one of the most important tools used for selling
Your Home for Sale... selling your home faster and for a potentially
You Will See When Selling Your Home... understanding all of the
Costs... don't forget about closing costs when you are selling your home.