So, Why Is This "Active" In the MLS????
Kent Simpson's recent blog post about the necessity and importance of agents and brokers accurately and expediently inputting data into the MLS got me thinking about how vitally important the MLS is to our business, not to mention how convenient it is, when operated properly.
In Kent's case, the failure of some agents/brokers to properly record sales data in the MLS might have cost him a sale, due to the appraiser being unable to access the required information. Thank God that Kent had his wits about him and took the extra steps to contact the various parties in order to get the required information.
Problem is, Kent should not have needed to take those extra steps, because that information was supposed to be in the MLS - already! Talk about an epic fail...
Furthermore, and unfortunately, this problem is not limited to sales/closed data, and doesn't just impact buyers and sellers trying to get to the closing table.
I think that I can safely say for many of us that we have sometimes spent hours and days trying to show a property to either a buyer or a tenant, and either one of the two scenarios occurred:
1. The property is already under deposit, or
2. The property is already sold/rented.
I had the unfortunate pleasure of showing a buyer a house last year, that according to the MLS, was active. I submitted the request to show, got an automatic confirmation, and proceeded to show my buyer the house. As we walked through, we noticed some...odd things...but quickly wrote it off as the previous owner just leaving a few things behind (it was a REO). It was only as we were leaving the property, when the new owner showed up, wondering why we were in their house! They were pleasant and all when they explained that they had just closed on the property that afternoon, and of course I explained to them that we had gotten confirmation to show it - even showed them the confirmation text and email - but the question that kept popping up in my head was how in the world could the listing agent have left this as active in the MLS? I never would have showed the house had it been marked as "under deposit"....Grrrrrrr.....
Now granted, such occurrences are not commonplace, but they can be avoided if agents/brokers properly input the required data in a timely fashion.
The problem is much more egregious when it comes to rentals.
I do not know at this point (I must have lost count) how many times I have set up appointments for rental showings that were marked as active in the MLS, not hear back from the listing agent, and at the last minute hear back from the listing agent that either the property is already rented, or the landlord has accepted an application and we just haven't entered it into the MLS yet.
Or even better still, never hear back from the listing agent that the property is already rented until after the showing has already taken place.
I've had that one happen to me on more than one occasion, and even recently. A tenant with good credit and good income called me and asked for my assistance in finding her a decent place. I went into the MLS, set up a search for her, and we found a few that met her criteria, (again, active in the MLS) so we went to take a look last week. The final unit that we saw was perfect. Spacious, clean, and conveniently located, she filled out an application with the required fee on the spot. I submitted the application when the office opened the following Monday. Awaiting a call with good news the following day, it was two days later when I received the call from the listing office that I was to come and pick up my client's rental application and fee because the unit was already rented when we showed it last week!
Is it too much to ask for a little consideration for your fellow agents? Please?
Take the time, a few short minutes to put the required information in the MLS. It's not that hard. If it is under deposit, then say so in the MLS. If it has been sold or rented, say so in the MLS! In the case of a rental, if the security deposit has not been given yet, but the landlord has agreed to rent the property, there is an option (at least in our MLS) that says "under deposit -continue to show".
Taking the time to input the data into the MLS is not only being considerate of your fellow agents, it is also professional.
And, the time, gas, and energy you save by doing so may next time very well be your own...