Street Name Updates on Hawaii Island

As part of ongoing updates to the expansive public records data in REsearch, we have begun to update street names in several subdivisions in East Hawaii, starting with Hawaiian Acres, Fern Acres, and Fern Forest Vacation Estates.

These updates also include standardizing street suffixes, such as using “RD” for “ROAD”.

As these updates affect thousands of parcels, they are being made gradually, with care, street by street. Work will then continue for other subdivisions, including Hawaiian Ocean View Estates (HOVE) in Kaʻu.

Better Searches, Better Listings

The benefits of this comprehensive data normalization effort are clear. With complete and consistent street names in our TMK public records data, you will be able to search for properties and listings in REsearch with greater confidence. With fewer variations in street names, it will take fewer steps and searches to find what you’re looking for.

On the MLS side, this improved TMK data will make it easier to enter complete listings for parcels in these subdivisions. Street names will autopopulate for new listings, at the same time preventing manual entry of potentially incorrect information.

Hawaiian Acres Street Names

In the Hawaiian Acres subdivision, streets have both ‘alias names,’ named in sequence by letter or number (like “ROAD G”) and Hawaiian language names (like “WAO KELE RD”). For this subdivision, we are retaining both street names, which will now be displayed as follows:

WAO KELE RD (ROAD G)

This will allow you to search for properties and listings using either street name.

How to Search Using the * Wildcard

REsearch allows you to use asterisks (*) to allow wildcard searches in most fields. If, for example, you only know the ‘alias’ name of a street in Hawaiian Acres, you can enter *ROAD G* in the “Street” field.

This will display any street that matches that pattern, allowing you to select “WAO KELE RD (ROAD G)” from the list.

Updates Are Ongoing

These updates are well underway and will proceed subdivision by subdivision. We look forward to completing this data normalization effort for nearly all of Hawaii Island in the next few months. We hope you will agree that the work will be worthwhile and improve REsearch for everyone.

Our Data Quality department is dedicated to exactly that: quality data. And Hawaii Information Service is always looking for ways we can improve. If you have questions or suggestions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

New Virtual Open Houses in REsearch

Virtual real estate options are evolving rapidly to keep the market moving in the time of COVID-19, and so are we!

The REALTOR® toolkit is rapidly expanding, and one of the most important innovations in the industry is the Virtual Open House. You can now schedule and promote Virtual Open House events in REsearch, and continue to serve the needs of your clients remotely!

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Entering a virtual open house starts the same way as entering a conventional open house at the property. From the REsearch dashboard, click the ‘Open Houses‘ tab, then click the ‘New Open House‘ link on the left.

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For a virtual open house, simply select “Virtual Open House” after entering the MLS number:

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Finally, enter your virtual open house details. In most cases, this will be a registration link to a scheduled video conference via a service like Zoom, GoToMeeting, or Google Hangouts. (Remember to follow best practices to ensure that your virtual event is secure!)

If you are using a different service that does not use a meeting or event URL, we also support the ability to enter instructions in the “Notes” field instead. Do interested attendees need to text you to be included in an Apple FaceTime call? Do they need to connect with you on Microsoft Skype? Explain here.

We’re very excited to deliver this enhancement to support your important work! Please contact us if you have questions or comments.


How to host a Virtual Open House

Here are some resources to help you get started with Virtual Open Houses!


A Quick Refresher…

What are the different virtual options?

VirtualShowing5

Earlier this month, ShowingTime introduced the ability to set up virtual showings. A virtual showing is a private, live online video conference arranged between listing agents and buyer’s agents, similar to arranging a showing at the property.

VirtualOpenHouse5

We are now introducing the ability to schedule a virtual open house, which is the live, online video version of a conventional open house. It’s a scheduled event where the listing agent hosts multiple buyer’s agents and potential buyers to review, discuss, and ask questions about the property.

VideoTour5

Finally, don’t forget virtual and video tours. These are recorded, static on-demand presentations of a property. A virtual or video tour can be a simple video slideshow, a produced walkthrough of the property, or even an interactive 3-D model (like Matterport). Here’s how to add them to your listings!

More to come from Hawaii Information Service!

We know doing business today is challenging, and we are committed to helping you accomplish your goals and keeping the real estate market moving. We are excited to let you know about this latest enhancement, and please stay tuned as we share more tips and tools that can help you work #safeathome.

Displaying Designations in REsearch

We have updated Research to change where designations are shown to limit the impact that extra-long lists of designations or other text have on the display and printing of formats.

Designations are still shown on the MLS Full, Brochure, and Brand formats, on emails sent from REsearch, on the Client Portal, and are displayed when agent names are clicked in REsearch. Your brokerage and license number will still be shown in one-line formats.

Background

The designations field is an open text field to allow agents to include their professional designations beyond the Salesperson Broker designations, such as GRI, ABR, CRS, etc., for display in REsearch.

On the one-liner, a long list of designations would often cause the display to span several lines, as shown below. In addition, the field’s prominent display within Research (such as in the one-liner format) prompted many agents to place marketing messages in this area.

This change allows more listings to be shown in one-line formats and improves display and printing on many agent formats.

Improved Display and Printing

Before

You can continue to see your fellow agent’s designations when you click on their names:

And designations continue to appear in client-facing formats such as the MLS Full, Brochure, and Brand format (below), email signatures, and on the Client Portal:

Note: There has been no change to the distribution of designations outside Research, such as to third-party portals or IDX.

REsearch Update: Leasehold Disclosure in Public Remarks

To reduce consumer confusion, and to better meet the requirements of state law, we have implemented a new feature in the REsearch listing input form that will increase the visibility of the leasehold disclosure for affected listings.

Background

Hawaii Administrative Rules §16-99-11(d) requires that “a leasehold property advertised for sale in any medium shall be identified by the word “leasehold.”

Although separating leasehold listings from fee simple listings within the MLS is straightforward, the distinction is less clear on third-party listing sites like Zillow or Realtor.com. In most cases, the “leasehold” designation is relegated to fine print, or not displayed at all.

As a result, leasehold properties are often displayed prominently on external sites due to prices that may be drastically lower than fee simple properties. This can lead to consumer confusion and require additional broker and agent resources to address.

What’s New

Third-party sites are not bound to comply with HAR§16-99-11(d). The HIS Board of Directors has decided to ensure appropriate disclosure across data publishers by having REsearch automatically prepend the public remarks for leasehold properties with the phrase, “This is a leasehold property.”

When you select “Leasehold” for the required “Land Tenure” field, you will see a notification that “This is a leasehold property.” has been added to the listing’s public remarks:

If the length of the existing public remarks prevent the addition of the phrase, you will be asked to edit them to accommodate it.

The phrase is being added to the beginning of the public remarks because different third-party publishers have different character limits for the remarks field, and thus may truncate them and inadvertently remove this disclosure should it appear at the end.

What’s Next

We hope this small change increases awareness of the leasehold status of listings, and encourages consumers to educate themselves on the distinction between leasehold and fee simple properties.

At this time, this disclosure can be edited and removed. However, in the next update to the MLS Rules & Regulations, including this disclosure in the public remarks will be made a requirement.

Did You Know?

Hawaii Information Service was among the first MLSs in the nation to introduce control of listing data distribution with the introduction of the REsearch Syndication Dashboard in 2015.

Principal brokers can control whether their listings are distributed to sites like Zillow or Realtor.com, or listing syndication services like Listhub, by clicking on “Settings” in the main left-side REsearch menu, then click “Syndication” in the list of options.

 

Questions? Suggestions? Feedback? We’re always happy to hear from you!

REsearch Update: New Primary Property Type Field

We have made a small change to the listing input form in REsearch that will give you greater control over how your listings are displayed and marketed on external websites like Realtor.com and Zillow!

Background

While REsearch allows listings to fall under more than one property type, other systems that work with your data often allow only one.

For listings that fall under only a single property type — only residential, or only vacant land — nothing will change:

What’s New

In the less common scenario where you would like to classify a single listing under several Property Types, such as both business and residential, selecting more than one Property Type will reveal a new field labeled “Primary Property Type”:

By allowing you to set a primary property type, you can decide whether, for example, a commercial farm with a cabin should be treated as a commercial or residential listing on external sites.

The “Primary Property Type” field is not required, and if you do not make a selection, your listing data will continue to be syndicated (and displayed by external sites) as they have always been.

Behind the scenes, this small change meanwhile allows Hawaii Information Service to continue to improve the technology you rely on every day, particularly as they relate to national real estate data standards.

Did You Know?

Hawaii Information Service was among the first MLSs in the nation to introduce broker-level control of listing data distribution with the introduction of the REsearch Syndication Dashboard in 2015.

To control whether your listings are distributed to sites like Zillow or Realtor.com, or listing syndication services like Listhub, click on “Settings” in the main left-side REsearch menu, then click “Syndication” in the list of options.

Questions? Suggestions? Feedback? We’re always happy to hear from you!

New & Updated Map Layers in REsearch

We’ve made a number of improvements to the maps in REsearch to provide you even more useful information about neighborhoods and properties in Hawaii!

Annual Rainfall

annualrainfall.2019-07-03 10_07_31

With the updated “Annual Rainfall” layer, you can display graduated border lines denoting ranges of rainfall in inches. Annual rainfall amounts are shown by default, but you can also select different months of the year, and see the rainfall for that month.

The rainfall information comes from the 2011 Rainfall Atlas of Hawaii, which uses a standard climatological averaging period of 30 years (1978-2007) across the state.

Federal Opportunity Zones

OpportunityZonesKauai

With the new “Opportunity Zones” layer, you can see the areas designated by the federal government as economically-distressed communities where new investments, under certain conditions, may be eligible for preferential tax treatment. Opportunity zones exist on each of the main Hawaiian Islands.

For more information on Opportunity Zones, please visit this Frequently Asked Questions page on the IRS website.

Hawaii Island Wastewater Mains

WastewaterHawaii

Finally, for Hawaii Island, we have added a new “Wastewater” map layer showing wastewater infrastructure, and specifically the types of wastewater mains in a given area, such as whether they are state, county, or privately operated and whether they operate via force or gravity.

We have more map enhancements planned — stay tuned for more good news!

Changes to ‘Hold’ Listing Availability

Please note the following changes affecting listings in ‘Hold’ status.

zipform-by-ziplogixListings in ‘hold’ status are no longer accessible in zipForm.

Going forward, in order to import listing details into zipForm via MLS Connect, the listing will need to be in any other status.

This change is to address a security issue recently brought to our attention. zipLogix, the provider of zipForm, is unable to prevent the ‘hold’ listings of one agent from being viewed by another agent through their service. Therefore, zipLogix recommended that ‘hold’ listings be removed from the data provided to them.

We realize that this change presents an inconvenience to many agents that used the ‘hold’ listing status as a means to prepare zipForm documents in advance, but we hope you understand that the security and privacy of your ‘hold’ listing details takes precedence.


Listings in ‘hold’ status will expire and be deleted after 12 months unless action is taken.

Presently, listings in ‘hold’ status are retained indefinitely in REsearch. As part of new database maintenance procedures, listings that have been in ‘hold’ status for more than 12 months will be flagged for deletion.

We will provide seven days’ notice prior to deletion, and you will be able to request that these listings be retained in ‘hold’ status for an additional three months. This request must be made in writing via email to support@hiinfo.com. You will receive confirmation that your request has been received.

We encourage you to review your current ‘hold’ listings now to determine whether you will be affected. We will provide ample warning via email and login page notices prior to beginning this process.

Thank you very much for your understanding!

Check Out the New Cloud CMA!

The best Comparative Market Analysis (CMA) tool in the industry is getting even better!

Cloud CMA is built into REsearch and is provided as a free member benefit! Hawaii Information Service members have created more than 40,000 Cloud CMA reports since it was introduced in 2011. Next month, Cloud CMA is rolling out a new design, and several new features!

New Look & More!

The new Cloud CMA has been re-designed to help you give even better listing presentations.

Every page has been re-designed, including a new modern theme set for a fresh new look. A new larger map makes it easier to review listings and exclude comps. You can easily add a listing (and even add off-market properties). And the library of available report sections include new and updated content!

As always, Cloud CMA works on any device, meaning you can start a report on your phone, fine tune it on your laptop, and present it on your tablet!

Switch to the New Cloud CMA Today!

The new Cloud CMA design will go live on January 1, 2019, but you can switch over now! Just click the “New Cloud CMA” link at the top of any Cloud CMA screen:

Want to take a closer look at the new Cloud CMA? Check out the blog post announcing the upgrade or check out the library of Cloud CMA how-to videos.

We also offer live training webinars every month, which includes classes on REsearch CMA and Cloud CMA!

ShowingTime is Now Available in REsearch!

Schedule-a-Showing-icon_xlShowingTime is now available in REsearch! You now have access to an industry leading scheduling solution that will save you time and effort in requesting, confirming, and managing property showings.

ShowingTime also provides a mobile app and can send text messages to make, review, and approve requests while on the go!

Everything You Need to Know in 30 Minutes!

ShowingTime hosted several Quick-Start Training webinars just for HIS members, and you can watch a recorded session here:

You should also check out the ShowingTime Overview in our Knowledge Base help site.

Schedule Showings Anytime, From Anywhere!

ShowingTime makes it easy for members to show and sell listings, reducing scheduling issues by simplifying the showing request and confirmation process, enabling members to work efficiently while on the go.

Benefits for Listing Agents and Offices:

  • Generate showing requests 24/7
  • Eliminate repetitive calls from agents checking availability
  • Automatically notify sellers about showings, feedback

Benefits for Showing Agents:

  • Point and click/tap to request showings 24/7
  • Control your showing schedule
  • Eliminate surprises by reviewing showing instructions
  • Communicate more efficiently with listing agents and offices

Use the ShowingTime App While On the Go!

showingtimeappIn addition to managing ShowingTime appointments on the web via REsearch and via text message, you can also use the free ShowingTime mobile app! The app allows you to:

  • Schedule or confirm showings
  • See upcoming showing appointments
  • View showing instructions
  • Respond to showing feedback requests
  • Get push notifications of showing requests and confirmations
  • Search listings in your MLS
  • Add activities (open houses, etc.) to listing reports

With your free ShowingTime for the MLS account, there is no username and password to use the app. You only need to connect your account to the app through a special email sent to your smartphone! Click here to learn how to activate the ShowingTime mobile app.


Download the ShowingTime Quick-Start Guide

ShowingTimeQuickStartGuide


If you are already a customer of ShowingTime and use other services like ShowingTime Appointment Center, please contact ShowingTime to learn how to connect all your services and get the most out of ShowingTime’s integrated agent solutions!

Latest REsearch Enhancements

We’re happy to deliver another set of improvements to REsearch, inspired by valuable feedback from members like you!

Printable Infographics

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We already provide monthly market statistics infographics for Kauai and Hawaii Island, which are designed to be easily shared online. We are now providing these same infographics in higher-resolution, printable PDF format as well! This pairs well with the more detailed PDF reports you can get from our new market stats presentation.

Easier Code Lookups for Sale Reporting

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When reporting a sale in which the buying agent is not a member of HIS, you are prompted to provide a non-member code instead of a Sold Agent ID in REsearch. To make it easier to find the correct non-member code, we’ve added a link to the Report Sale screen under the Listings Menu to the non-member code list in our Knowledge Base!

For reference, here are the codes you’ll find:

  • 1799 – Buyer Not Represented
  • 2311 – Non Participant: Real estate agent on Hawaii Island or Kauai who is not a member of HIS.
  • 9033 – Oahu Reciprocal Agent – Real estate agent on Oahu who is not a member of HIS.
  • 9035 – Maui Reciprocal Agent – Real estate agent on Maui who is not a member of HIS.
  • 9036 – Mainland Reciprocal Agent – Real estate agent on mainland who is not a member of HIS.
  • 1792 – For Sale By Owner (FSBO)
  • 2309 – Developer

Also: Updates for Co-Listors, Tax History, Email!

Here are a few other improvements we’ve made this month:

  • Co-Listors can now update listing photos, even when affiliated with a different brokerage.
  • Tax history data is more clear, with REsearch showing what we received from each county or N/A (instead of $0) if not available.
  • Friendlier prospect email headers for email systems that display them, removing “noreply” and personalizing for each agent.

These are only the first REsearch enhancements of 2018, and there are more improvements to come! If you have a suggestion to make REsearch work better for you, please don’t hesitate to get in touch! As we hope these updates demonstrate, we’re proud to be able to be responsive to your needs and deliver improvements to better support you!