What Is The MLS And How To List On MLS Flat Fee Florida… Your Questions Answered!
Hi! This is Matt Buttner with List Now Realty. I’m the broker and owner of List Now Realty. I just wanted to take a minute to do a video and kind of explain how the MLS works and how to list on MLS flat fee Florida. A lot of people really don’t understand how the MLS works, don’t even understand what the MLS really is. Just wanted to do a quick video here kind of explain how it works, what happens when you put your property on the MLS, how does it get to Zillow, why do you see some differences between your listing on the MLS versus on Zillow versus on Realtor.com, and why you should list on MLS flat fee Florida instead of just putting a For Sale By Owner sign in the yard.
MLS Coverage Areas
Starting off here on our website, I’ll scroll down here to our coverage area. The reason we have a coverage area is the MLS is very local to specific areas. There’s no such thing as a nationwide MLS. That doesn’t exist. Each particular area is going to have its own MLS. Now, where we’re located in Central Florida, we’re actually very lucky because our MLS is the largest in Florida and the largest in a lot of places. It covers 15 counties, so we have a huge coverage area. What that means is the individual realtor associations in these areas have all banded together and they decided to use the same MLS they can all share information between each other. That’s why we have… If you notice up here in Volusia County, Volusia County is split between east and west. We don’t cover the east side of Volusia County.
The reason for that is that’s where Daytona Beach and New Smyrna Beach are. There is a separate realtor association, the Daytona Beach Association of Realtors and there’s also the New Smyrna Beach Association of Realtors. They have their own MLS. I mean their cities touch each other and they still use their own MLS. If you’re an agent that works the Daytona area and the Smyrna, you have to have access to both. They have not joined the MLS that we’re a part of, so that’s why we don’t have access over there. If your property is over in Daytona, you need to list it on the Daytona Beach MLS because that’s where the agents in that area are looking for listings.
Our Coverage Area In Florida
This blue area, this represents our coverage area. We don’t list anywhere where we don’t have 100% coverage. There are some areas that are kind of overlapping. Maybe half the county is covered by one MLS, half is covered by the other. If that is the situation, we’re going to have access to both if we’re taking your listing. We’re not going to take your listing and put it on one when there is another one that covers your area. You’re getting 100% coverage if you list with us. When you list on MLS flat fee Florida with List Now Realty you get your property listed exactly where it should be. For example, Hernando County. They have their own MLS. The association of realtors there has chosen to use their own MLS. They don’t use the MLS that we use.
That’s kind of how it works. It’s very local. The agents in each area are going to have their own MLS that they’re looking on and that’s why it’s important to have your property listed on MLS flat fee Florida on the exact local MLS where agents in your area are going to be looking for properties.
What Is The MLS?
Let me switch over to the MLS. This is what it looks like when we log in. I’m logging to the MLS here. It’s called Stellar MLS. It used to be called My Florida Regional MLS. They just rebranded, but basically what the MLS is it’s an online database of listings and real estate information.
It started way back in the day. It looked like a phone book and it was updated weekly or biweekly, whatever. Each new listing that came on the market they would put into the MLS book. All that’s changed now. Everything is online. Everything is digital. Everything is on this website. There are thousands of listings on the MLS at any given time as you can imagine with 15 counties. This is where your listing ends up if you list on MLS flat fee Florida.
Let’s go to one of these listings here and I’ll just show you how it works. Now, if we go here, here’s a listing here. Now, you can see all the information for the listing is here. This is why we ask so many questions when you go to list your property. They ask us everything. It’s very, very detailed. You don’t see this level on detail on Zillow or Realtor.com, anywhere else.
Why Doesn’t My Contact Information Show Up On Zillow?
The MLS has the most information. As it goes out to other websites, you get less and less information, but this is the epicenter of information. One of the things that I want to point out here, a common question that we get is, when I list on MLS flat fee in Florida, why doesn’t Zillow, why doesn’t Realtor.com display my contact information? I put that in my remarks. Why isn’t that there?
If you notice on this listing, there is a spot of text at the top. Now, this is the public remark. These are the remarks. This is the paragraph that gets sent out to Zillow, Realtor.com, all the public websites. They get this. By MLS rules, we’re not allowed to put phone numbers, names, commissions, anything regarding like a bonus. Anything like that. Anything that they deem confidential, we can’t put in this section. Where we can put it is down the bottom. Now, this is called the realtor only remarks here. You can see we’ve got the seller’s phone number and everything in here. That’s where we’re allowed to put it. We can’t put it up in this public remarks or else we’ll get a fine for that. They scan automatically. If they pick up a phone number or a lock box code, anything there, they’ll fine us for it. We have to put it down here.
Well, the problem is once it gets sent out to Zillow and Realtor.com… This is a different listing. Once it gets sent out here, only the public remarks are displayed. This is the paragraph from the top. This is the public remarks and you won’t see any phone numbers or anything here because we’re not allowed to do it. Now, one of the ways you can get around this at least on Zillow when you list on MLS flat fee Florida… Here’s Realtor.com. They show things a little bit differently.
How To Put Your Contact Information In The Zillow What I Love About The Home Section
But at least on Zillow, they have a section called the what I love about the home section. If you go into Zillow and you claim the listing as the owner, now this is at the time of recording this video, they change things all the time, but at the time I’m recording this video, you can actually go and claim your listing as the owner. You can edit certain things, very limited things, even if we have it listed on MLS flat fee Florida.
Once you claim the listing as the owner, you can edit the what I love about the home section and you can put your phone number, email address, whatever you want there. Once it gets outside of the MLS, it doesn’t matter. There are no rules. No one’s going to fine us if you do that. A lot of people actually do that because they want their information displayed Otherwise, it’s just going to show me as the listing agent.
Who Gets The Inquiries From Zillow?
Now, if someone does contact us on one of these sites… For example, if they contact agent or if they scroll down here, that should be listed somewhere, there it is, listing provided by and you have our information, if someone calls this phone number, now this is their office phone number, this is displayed on all of our listings, that number actually comes to us. We have a live receptionist answer it even after hours, holidays, weekends, and we provide the caller with your contact information. That’s the best way that we found to get around this. Now, another thing that people tend to get upset about sometimes is they say, “Well, if I go to my listing and press contact agent, it doesn’t contact you. It sends it to some other agent. What’s going on?”
Well, that’s how Zillow makes money. That’s how they have become the giant company that they are. Basically what Zillow does is… A lot of times what they’re doing is they’re selling off the lead to the highest bidder. We still get leads as the listing agent. They still come through, but a majority of the leads are sold off to other agents that are looking for leads and they pay Zillow for that. It goes to the highest bidder. You buy leads by zip code basically if you’re an agent. What happens is if a buyer comes along, they click that contact agent. It’s not guaranteed to come to us. It may go to another agent. There’s nothing at all we can do about that.
You can put your contact information in the what I love about the home section. Maybe the person will call you there. But if they click that button, it’s up to Zillow. We can’t tell Zillow how to change their business model. That’s how it is. A lot of people get mad about that, but that’s kind of how it works when you list on MLS flat fee Florida. We really have no control over it.
Why Does My Listing Look Different On Zillow, Realtor.com, etc.?
Another thing that people get confused about is… For example, let’s actually pull up this other listing here and I’ll show you just so we’re looking at the same listing across both. Now, the information in the MLS is super detailed, but not all of these fields match the fields on Zillow or any of the other websites.
For example, if you look down here, under AC we have… When we’re going to list this property, we’ve got a checkbox for central air and we’ve got a checkbox for humidity control. Well, notice what happens when you come over here to Zillow. Zillow has different fields. They call this stuff different things. They may not have all of the checkboxes that the MLS has. The MLS is way more detailed than Zillow and Zillow couldn’t possibly display all this information without making it look cluttered. If we come down here, Zillow calls that cooling features whereas the MLS calls it AC. Zillow also doesn’t have a humidity control option, so the only thing they’re going to display is central.
I can’t add humidity control because Zillow doesn’t have the field. There’s no checkbox. There’s nothing to add. Zillow just doesn’t display it. It’s important to know that not all of the information is going to be displayed on Zillow or any other website. This goes for all websites. They all display it differently. Even the information that is displayed may not be exactly the same and it might be called something different. We really have no control over that. Each website is taking that feed from the MLS and they’re displaying it how they want to display it.
Another thing I find funny is on the MLS, you’ve got on this particular listing it’s two beds or two baths and a half bath. Two and a half baths. If you look on Zillow, they call it three beds, three baths. Now technically there are three baths. One of them is a half bath, but Zillow doesn’t specify until you get down here and they’ll actually tell you that one of those bathrooms is a half bath. We’ve had people complain about that before, but we have no control over that. I can’t tell Zillow how to display that. That’s up to Zillow.
Contact Us Today To List Your Property On MLS For A Flat Fee In Florida
Clears up some misconceptions and misinformation you have about the MLS and listing on MLS flat fee Florida. I hope it answers some of your questions. Makes things a little bit more clear about how this whole thing works. If you have any other questions or if you’d like to list on MLS flat fee Florida, feel free to call us. Shoot us an email. Send us a message to the little chat bubble on our website and we’ll get back to you if you have specific questions that weren’t answered in this video. Have a great rest of your day and hopefully we’ll be listing one of your properties soon.