Spring is here, and it’s a great time to review how to keep your listings clean and clear of any pesky potential problems!
We’re sharing the most common MLS rule violations that we’ve seen recently. Though they are always promptly remedied, avoiding processing fees, these are the ways to ensure smooth sailing from day one!
1. Stay clear of calls to action.
Not all verbs are bad, but public remarks are best when they focus on the property for sale, rather than telling the reader what to do. Please avoid directives to “call me” or “call your REALTOR®” and let the property speak for itself.
2. Cut out contact information.
Though it’s a basic rule, it bears repeating: please don’t include contact information in your property description or any client- or public-facing field. We discourage any contact details, whether for listing agents, owners, or real estate service providers.
3. Disclose leasehold up front.
If your listing is leasehold, the public remarks must begin with the phrase, “This is a leasehold property.” Similarly, if your listing has shared, fractional, or timeshare ownership, that must be disclosed in the first sentence of the public remarks.
4. Don’t forget the photos.
A picture is worth a lot of words. And at least one picture is required for every listing. While it’s best to have a photo when a listing goes active, you must add one within 24 hours once released. No photo yet? Consider using “Preview” status, which provides up to a month to prepare a listing.
5. Keep people out of the picture.
When it comes to listing photos or videos, the property should be the star of the show. Photos and videos must not contain “for sale” signs, nor people. We understand that people on a crowded beach visible from the property may be hard to avoid, but definitely steer clear of “lifestyle shots” of surfers or hula dancers.
6. Use unbranded virtual tours.
Virtual tours, from video slideshows to immersive 3-D presentations, are more popular than ever. They’re sure to draw buyers’ attention, so please make sure they don’t contain branding or other information beyond details about the property. Most tour providers give you both unbranded and branded video links.
7. Mind your URLs.
Secondary to what’s in your video is where you host it. The web address cannot identify a broker or agent. Also, YouTube cannot be used as a video host due to the attribution and advertising on the platform. Your video tour provider should be able to help. You can also use Vimeo (with certain settings), or host with HIS
Flashback: Tech Expo Rule Review
Too much reading? Check out this video from last year’s Joint Tech Expo, “DMCA, ADA, and the Clear Cooperation Policy.” The last seven minutes features a “lightning round” reviewing the top MLS rule violations.
If you have questions, please contact us!