Protect Consumer Access to Real Estate Listings

As a current or past customer or client of a real estate brokerage which provided online access to homes listed in the local multiple listing service (MLS), I found the ability to access all homes and receive email updates of new properties to be an invaluable, timesaving convenience. I understand that brokers\' ability to continue providing consumers with online access to all local real estate listings is threatened by policy changes proposed by the National Association of REALTORS which would have serious negative implications for consumers. 1. As a homebuyer, changes that would allow brokers to withhold some or all of their listings by \"opting out\" would undermine my ability to access all listings. 2. Changes that would permit selective sharing with some brokers, but not others, would potentially discriminate against my preferred broker and limit competition. 3. As a home seller, these attempts to restrict distribution of listings would undermine the ability to get the widest exposure and highest resale price for my home. In summary, the proposed changes are clearly anti-consumer and anti-competitive. Consequently, I urge the National Association of REALTORS (NAR) to enable their members to act in the best interest of their customers and clients by preserving their ability to distribute and access the entire inventory of MLS listings online. I urge the NAR to reject the proposed changes at their annual convention in Washington, DC, May 15 to 17, 2003. ************ Please forward this petition to anyone you know who has recently bought or sold a home, is currently buying or selling a home, or hopes to do so in the future. The ability for consumers to distribute and access real estate listings online is at stake.

Sponsor

Co-sponsored by the Real Estate Consumer Alliance, or RECALL, an ad hoc coalition of real estate consumer advocates, including: Leo Berard, Buyer Brokers of Cape Cod, Founding President of National Association of Exclusive Buyer Agents & Mass. Association of Buyer Agents Stephen Brobeck, Executive Director, Consumer Federation of America Bruce Hahn, Chairman, American Homeowners Grassroots Alliance Tom Hathaway, Founder, The Buyers Agent, the nation\'s largest buyer franchise with locations in 37 cities across 20 states Barry Miller, Buyers Only America Realty; Founder, Real Estate Buyers Agent Council (REBAC) Nancy Seats, President Homeowners Against Deficient Dwellings, (HADD.com), a national organization with chapters in 21 states Andrew Show, Buyer\'s Resource Realty Services, Columbus, Ohio, President-Elect, National Association of Exclusive Buyer Agents Becky Swann, Founder, IRED.com, International Real Estate Digest LaLa Wang, President of MLX.com, a Manhattan based consumer real estate service & BrokersNYC, a Multiple Listing Service for brokers Additional cosponsors to be announced shortly. For more info contact: Bill Wendel http://www.realestatecafe.blogs.com/recall/ RECafe@mac.com

Links

Consumer Federation weighs in on online listings debate Stephen Brobeck co-sponsors iPetition effort to influence VOW policy outcome http://www.inman.com/inmannews.aspID=35262&CatType=R Consumers May Weigh in on MLS Listings Access http://www.ired.com/news/2003/mlsaccess.htm Just say no to VOW policy Editorial: Realtors board of directors should reject latest proposal http://www.inman.com/inmannews.aspID=35227&CatType=R (Subscribers only) Liberate the listings Consumer groups push NAR to expose MLS data http://www.inman.com/inmannews.aspID=35207&CatType=R (Subscribers only) Realtors to Internet: Drop dead David Coursey, AnchorDesk, ZDNet http://www.zdnet.com/anchordesk/stories/story/0,10738,2881445,00.html (Cut & paste URL above) Cendant Will Pull Brand Listings If VOWs Remain Unregulated http://realtytimes.com/rtnews/rtapages/20030305_vowregulation.htm NEW Virtual Office Website (\"VOW\") Work Group Report (April 2003) National Association of REALTORS http://www.realtor.org/mempolweb.nsf/pages/vowreport2 REALTORS debate how much info to put on Net http://www.usatoday.com/tech/news/realty2.htm

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