In a recent article in The Globe and Mail it was reported that; "Canadians looking for homes are used to visiting the industry-funded Realtor.ca to browse listings. But the brokerages feel the site lacks the advanced information features about specific neighbourhoods that are needed to deal with a slew of anticipated rivals, all of whom are investing heavily in technology to lure home buyers – and advertisers – away from the MLS."
Mr. Don Lawby, President of Century 21 Canada was noted as saying, “Many of our companies have iconic brands that have been built over the years”. These companies include such prominent names as Century 21, Royal LePage and ReMax. The big three just mentioned, had a meeting on August 31, 2010 to hammer out an alternative listing site. The meeting revolved around continuing to work with organized real estate for easy access to the data and not rivalry with the MLS.
Just prior to this, Yahoo Canada announced it will offer listings on its main search page using database and real-time search technology from Toronto-based Zoocasa.com. Now Zoocasa has often been accused of scraping the MLS sites for listings, however, Zoocasa's President Mr. Butch Langlois said, "each agent voluntarily posts their listings in exchange for the advanced features offered on the site."
With technology moving exponentially forward and becoming an integrated part of our daily business, we can't afford to dedicate ourselves to one system that is not keeping astride with present technology.
While I understand the need to support our MLS system, can we afford not to be present at those sites that our prospective clients are utilizing? That's why I'm in favour of these three highly visible organizations of considering an alternative to MLS. How do you feel about this?
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