Why Did TMLS Change the System?
Triangle made the decision late last year to do two things in 2023: translate the database to the national standard, and offer choice in MLS systems to Subscribers. The first part involved combing through every term in every category and comparing them to RESO, the official national dictionary of real estate terms. This required hundreds of small changes in our terms, and they are all reflected in the new Listing Management system. The benefits of this are many:
- Consumers looking at other markets will see terms they recognize, instead of local jargon that might be well known to us but is foreign to people who are accustomed to the standard.
- Matching terms allows us to data share with other MLSs with relative ease. Now that we have this milestone behind us, watch for announcements about pending data shares with other North Carolina MLSs.
- Software based on the standards works everywhere. So, products can be built once and published everywhere. This materially increases the availability of these services because it dramatically reduces the cost to deploy and maintain them.
Now, with the database translated, TMLS was able to move to the second part of the plan: introduce the concept of Choice.
Front End of Choice: In the past, the MLS Board of Directors chose the MLS software and all 15,000 users were forced to use it for almost everything. Other markets such as California Regional MLS, the country’s largest, NorthStar MLS, MRED, and others offer more than one MLS interface so it’s a new but not original concept. By allowing Subscribers to choose between the three leading MLS platforms, we force those companies to compete more urgently for your business than they ever have. Now, you have until the end of February to try the three leading systems. We know that choice is going to be popular with the membership as soon as the data levels out.
Very briefly, three choices are:
- Paragon from ICE: Paragon is a popular MLS platform and has been the only platform for TMLS Subscribers for the last several years. It is popular for its consumer-facing features and ease of use. ICE is a large, publicly traded company based in Atlanta and recently acquired the former Black Knight Financial Services, the makers of Paragon. You can learn more about ICE here and here, as well as our recent Podcast here.
- Matrix from CoreLogic: Matrix has the most subscribers of all MLS providers. It is popular for its depth and integration with public records through its Realist platform. CoreLogic is owned by two venture capital firms: Stone Point Capital and Insight Partners. You can learn more about CoreLogic here and here, as well as our recent Podcast here.
- Flexmls from FBS: Flexmls is also very popular and has about the same number of subscribers nationally as Paragon. It is known for its flexibility, mapping, focus on mobility, and a consistent experience from computer to phone and back. FBS is by far the smallest of the three, and is 100% Employee Owned. You can learn more about FBS here and here, as well as our recent Podcast here.
Listings, updates, photos, and documents managed with the Listing Management system will copy into Paragon, Matrix, Flexmls, and the other systems at roughly the same time. After launch on Nov 29, it will take some time for the systems to sync and for mapping errors to be fixed. At some point, hopefully this year, we have a design to make those updates instantaneous (using webhooks, for data scientists in the audience).