Remembering Hugh

It’s hard to believe, but Sunday (July 23) will mark one year since the passing of our colleague and friend, Hubert “Hugh” Skanes-Cady (Trimble). He tragically lost his life as the result of a motor vehicle crash when he was rear ended while riding his motorcycle. It was an extremely sad and difficult time for all of us.

For over 15 years, Hugh administered the NorthstarMLS rules and regulations with expert knowledge and guidance, kindness and humor. He was one-of-a-kind. We greatly miss his presence and hearing his unequivocal voice and laugh around our office.

Drive Focused Pledge Site
In Hugh’s memory, we introduced our Drive Focused campaign last year to raise awareness and help put an end to distracted driving. Visit to watch our series of videos and take the pledge to #DriveFocused.

Join Us for a 5K Walk/Run
As part of our ongoing Drive Focused campaign, NorthstarMLS has partnered with the Shreya R. Dixit Memorial Foundation to sponsor the 10th Annual Raksha 5K Walk and Run for Distracted-Free Driving on August 5, 2017 at Purgatory Creek Recreation Area in Eden Prairie. NorthstarMLS is sponsoring the 5K in Hugh’s name. The event is open to the public and we’re inviting all NorthstarMLS subscribers to join us.

Hands-Free Bill in MN
Our efforts have also extended to the government level where we have partnered with the Minnesota Safety Council to help push a hands-free bill that was introduced in MN last session. Unfortunately, the bill did not pass in 2017, but will be reintroduced early next session (February 2018). NorthstarMLS plans join forces with MSC again to help get this hands-free bill passed. Stay tuned.


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Did You Know?

On Facebook? Become a Down Payment Insider! 

Are you working with first-time homebuyers? Do you want to? Join Down Payment Resource’s new Down Payment Insiders Facebook Group for real estate pros interested in marketing ideas for reaching first-time homebuyers and understanding the ins and outs of down payment programs.

This past May, we announced that NorthstarMLS subscribers now have access to a new lead-gen tool from Down Payment Resource called Down Payment Connect. It’s a new way to quickly match clients and prospects to down payment programs they may be eligible for.

Click here to request to join the DPR Facebook community group today and start reaching first-time buyers!

Did You Know Archive Want to check out older Did You Know articles? Click here to view the archive of previous Did You Know articles on the NorthstarMLS Blog & Archive.

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Drive Focused Covered by Inman News

Top real estate industry news source Inman News published an article featuring the NorthstarMLS Drive Focused campaign on distracted driving in honor of our Rules & Regulations Administrator, Hubert “Hugh” Skanes-Cady (Trimble), who tragically lost his life in July of 2016 as the result of a motor vehicle crash when he was rear ended while riding his motorcycle. The article is timely, as this past Tuesday (July 11) marked one year since the crash.

You can read the full article by Inman News here.

An Inman News subscription is included for free (normally $228 per year) as part of your Minnesota Association of Realtors member benefit. If you’re not already a subscriber, just log in to your account on the Minnesota Association of Realtors website at, and then in the right sidebar, click on the Inman Select graphic and sign up. It’s a great source for industry related news.

If you haven’t already, please take 30 seconds to take the pledge to #DriveFocused at Together, our efforts could help avoid injury and even loss of life.

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Over $20 Billion Sold on MLS

Dear NorthstarMLS Subscribers,

Last year, the subscribing agents and brokers of NorthstarMLS sold over $20 billion of real estate.

$20 Billion Plus! That’s an amazing feat that you helped make possible. Congratulations.

NorthstarMLS is proud to be your partner is making homeownership happen. The information we safeguard, the rules we enforce and the community we foster help you do what you do with confidence.

Thank you for helping us make the market work.


John Mosey
NorthstarMLS President & CEO

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Where Are Your Listings Viewed?

NorthstarMLS is pleased to announce the release of its latest core service, ListTrac. (For details, view the ListTrac Product Reference and FAQ.)

To access ListTrac, click the ListTrac icon/link in the External Links box here on the Matrix Home screen. Or, select ListTrac from the Home tab drop-down menu.

Use ListTrac to see where your listings are being viewed most–such as IDX sites, third party websites, mobile apps, etc. Benefits include:

  • Provides an understanding of the activity (or lack of activity) on your listings compared to similar listings. This information can be used to determine if you may need to discuss price changes or other updates to the property.
  • Gives you a better understanding of the impact of price changes or other updates to the listing by seeing how listing views change over time.
  • Allows you to provide feedback to your clients on how their listing is performing online, including a Sellers Report that you can choose to send to the seller.

While ListTrac is not yet comprehensive of all activity on all sites where your listings may be located, they are working to continually add more sites.

  • Most IDX sites are included and are all grouped together for a single metric.
  • If your brokerage is opted in to the Zillow data feed, Zillow will be included in your metrics. If your brokerage has its own data feed to Zillow separate from NorthstarMLS, your broker needs to contact Zillow if they want their Zillow metrics included.
  • is not included, though there are efforts by NorthstarMLS and other MLS’s across the country to get them to participate.
  • Metrics for Matrix and the Matrix client portals are not included. However, they will be added later this Fall when we release the newest version of Matrix that accommodates ListTrac metrics.
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Tip of the Week for 7/10

Tip of the Week – Printing ShowingTime Confirmation Emails

If you like to print your showing appointments that you’ve requested, ShowingTime recently introduced an improved layout that will help you print your appointment confirmations more efficiently directly from a link in the showing confirmation email.

When the showing request has been confirmed, a link will appear at the top of the email (Click here for a printer friendly version) providing the address, date/time and showing instructions for the appointment. Click the link to open it.

Print View of Confirmation Email
Once you click the printer friendly link from your email, your requested showing will appear in a new browser window for you to print – like in the screen shot below.

The property address, date/time of showing and any showing instructions will be displayed. Items such as agent image, graphs, directions and listing agent info take up more space and are not included on the print view.

Submit Your Own Tip! Do you have a question that you would like to see featured a Tip of the Week? Or maybe you have your own tip you would like to share with other NorthstarMLS users. Send your question or idea to We will use one submission each month and the winner will receive a $30 Caribou Coffee gift card!

Tips On Demand Want to check out older Tip of the Week topics? Click here to view an archive of previous Tip of the Week entries.

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Beware! Email Scam Alert

We wanted to let you know of a potential MLS email scam targeting some NorthstarMLS subscribers.

These scam emails resemble a NorthstarMLS rules compliance notice like the ones we send out, but with several key differences. These differences include attachments (which we never include in official NorthstarMLS compliance notices) and a suspicious email address from the sender.

Watch the video below for more information on this email scam.

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Matrix Map Change

As you may have already noticed, the Bird’s Eye View on the bing maps in Matrix is no longer available. We apologize for not being able to give you information about this in advance. Here is what we have learned.

  • Microsoft discontinued Bird’s Eye View in their bing maps application for all third party vendors, not just Matrix.
  • Microsoft had been dealing with customer complaints on inaccuracy and outdated imagery for years on Bird’s Eye View and decided it was not worth maintaining.
  • CoreLogic, our Matrix vendor, has been fielding the same complaints from many of their MLS customers.
  • Although we lost Bird’s Eye View in the last update, the remaining satellite imagery has been improved to be more current.
  • The next update to Matrix (scheduled for October) will replace Bing maps with Google Maps in both The Matrix MLS and the Matrix Client Portal. We are very excited for this change, because all aspects of Google Maps are more accurate and up-to-date, as well as better features.
  • Sadly, Google Maps does not have the Bird’s Eye View, so that particular feature will not return.

We are sorry for the loss for those of you who liked using the Bird’s Eye View. We hope the impending integration of Google Maps is something you will look forward to and that will benefit you and your clients.

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New TransactionDesk App for iOS

Instanet Solutions has released the new TransactionDesk App for iOS devices. The TransactionDesk App is free and available to all NorthstarMLS subscribers now.

The app enables you to manage all of your listing, sales and lease transactions from your mobile device. With the app, you can keep in touch and communicate with clients, share documents, create and fill in forms, prepare and send documents for eSigning and send documents for remote approval to ensure transactions are completed and finished on time, every time.

All of the same functionality currently available in the browser based TransactionDesk service is available in the mobile app. Users can access the Authentisign®, Instanet Forms®, DocBox®, Instanet Fax® and Broker Dashboard services currently available in the browser based TransactionDesk service all from within the app. The TransactionDesk App can be downloaded on the Apple App store here.

For security reasons, you’ll need activate the app by logging into your NorthstarMLS Matrix account, opening Instanet Forms from the External Links box, retrieve your activation code for the app and copy/paste that code into the app on your device. It’s just takes a minute or so of your time. More information regarding the new TransactionDesk App can be found here.

Note: An Android version of the TransactionDesk App is in the works, but no release date has been announced by the vendor. Approximately 90% of mobile logins to TransactionDesk & Authentisign are from iOS devices. We’ll announce when an Android version is available. 

Instanet Archive Want to check out older InstanetSolutions content? Click here to view the archive of previous Instanet news, articles and other content on the NorthstarMLS Blog & Archive.

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Tip of the Week for 6/26

Tip of the Week – Homesnap’s DIY Facebook Video Ads

Looking to improve your social media game? Homesnap (a NorthstarMLS mobile solution) has a new Facebook ad format tool for you to create short videos for use on your Facebook page. It’s called DIY Video Ads. You can now take your own videos and turn them into video Facebook ads in minutes.

Shoot walkthroughs of your listings, create a personal introduction for prospective clients, interview a happy client at closing, highlight a price cut, provide tips to buyers/sellers – however you choose to be creative! And then just upload the video, choose a style or animation, add a message, and Homesnap takes care of the rest. You can do all of this from your mobile device, too!

Note: *DIY Video Ads are only available through the latest version of the Homesnap Pro app on iPhones and iPads. Facebook Video Ads are not a core service – extra fees will apply to use this feature. 

Watch the video below to see how it works and start creating your own video ads on Facebook.

Submit Your Own Tip! Do you have a question that you would like to see featured a Tip of the Week? Or maybe you have your own tip you would like to share with other NorthstarMLS users. Send your question or idea to We will use one submission each month and the winner will receive a $30 Caribou Coffee gift card!

Tips On Demand Want to check out older Tip of the Week topics? Click here to view an archive of previous Tip of the Week entries.

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