We are proud to announce that the consumer version of Homesnap, Powered by the Broker Public Portal, is now available to buyers and sellers who are now going to national real estate portals.

The Broker Public Portal (BPP) initiative grew out of a movement among brokers across the country to develop an industry-controlled real estate search experience for consumers.

The idea was to leverage the relationship between brokers and their agents with the MLS where they list and sell property so that agents could deliver the highest quality listing information directly to buyers and sellers.

NorthstarMLS was at the forefront of this national collaboration between brokers and MLS’s.

Homesnap is the business and technology partner chosen by the Broker Public Portal Board of Managers to realize its goal of providing agents with an alternative to the big portals. It is a Mobile-first solution that has already achieved extraordinary adoption on a national basis both by agents who can engage with their clients and prospects using Homesnap Pro and directly by consumers who have made Homesnap the #1 rated real estate app in the App store.

You won’t find any advertising on the app, nor will you be sold premium placement or zip codes. This is a “your listing – your lead” service that is provided to you as a benefit from your MLS.

Buyers and sellers will see all the homes for sale from every real estate company in our markets updated at the same frequency as IDX and with the same levels of quality and accuracy that are the hallmarks of MLS.

We believe that Homesnap, Powered by Broker Public Portal, will be especially appreciated by consumers for its superior content and direct connection to you, the real estate professional best able to help them with their buying and selling needs.

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TrustFunds is revolutionizing the earnest money process. All NorthstarMLS subscribers now have an active TrustFunds account – no login or setup is required. Sign up for a TrustFunds webinar on Thursday, Feb. 18 and take just 10 minutes out of your day to see how you, your buyers and your listings benefit from this innovative, secure and convenient online tool that eliminates the paper earnest money check.

There are 2 webinars scheduled for Feb. 18 — one tailored for Brokers, and one tailored for Agents. For Brokers, the 10-minute webinar session is scheduled for 9am. For Agents, the webinar session is scheduled for 10am. You can register for the session by clicking on the link above or below. You will receive a confirmation email once you have registered with a link to the webinar session.

This could be the best investment of 10 minutes for your entire week. Sign up now!

Broker? Click here to register.
Agent? Click here to register.

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

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NorthstarMLS recently negotiated favorable terms for a broker-optional listings data feed to Zillow.com.  The decision of whether or not to take advantage of that data feed and send their listings to Zillow.com (or any other third party website) lies solely with the Listing Broker. NorthstarMLS does not endorse Zillow—we merely provide this as a service for brokers who want it.

We emailed details of the optional Zillow data feed to brokers last week along with a tool where they can easily turn their data feed off or on (separately for Active and Pending/Sold listings).  This tool is available to them in the “External Links” box on the Matrix home screen.

If you have concerns about your listings going or not going to Zillow.com (or other third party websites), contact your broker to discuss.  The choice to send its listings to these sites will always be with the broker, not NorthstarMLS.

Why did we negotiate an optional data feed for brokers with Zillow? Having a data feed through NorthstarMLS allows brokers to have its listings updated with Zillow automatically and on better terms than they may have been able to get on their own.

These terms are:

  • Search results will display based on property characteristics, not on paid placement;
  • The listing agent’s name, phone number and brokerage will be displayed with the listing.  Consumers must be able to contact the listing agent/office via email, telephone or both without charge to the listing office, agent or consumer;
  • No consumer comments/blogging will be displayed with the listing;
  • Agents will not be reviewed by consumers on Zillow unless the agent opts in through Zillow Profiles;
  • The listing data will not be altered;
  • Zillow may not charge NorthstarMLS subscribers any fee to display more of the listing data.

Even if the broker has opted into the Zillow syndication feed, the Allow Auto Valuation Field (AVM) selection must be ‘Yes’.  If the homeowner directed that AVMs are not allowed on the property on the Internet Display Options form, NorthstarMLS does not send the listing to Zillow — Zillow includes an AVM.

If you have any questions regarding the Zillow data feed, contact our Help Desk at help@northstarmls.com or 651-251-5456 (1-877-251-5455 toll free), M-F 8:00-5:00.

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Benefits of TrustFunds for Brokers Recorded Webinar

Were you unable to attend any of the live Benefits of TrustFunds for Brokers Webinar sessions over the past couple months? No worries! Now you can view the same webinar that over 600 NorthstarMLS agents attended, on your own time.

TrustFunds is now available through NorthstarMLS. It’s a secure and convenient web-based service that allows buyers to simply and securely make their earnest money payment online and easily verify the status at anytime.

 Click here to watch the Broker TrustFunds Video

Not a Broker?
Watch the Benenfits of TrustFunds for Agents Recorded Webinar — tailored for Agents. Click here to view it.

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Now that True Lifestyle Cost (TLC) has been available in Matrix for a couple months, we are also making it available to agents and brokers to add to their public-facing websites.

Benefits of adding TLC search to your website:

  • Consumers cannot get TLC from third party portals, only agent/broker sites.
  • Consumers must enter their email address in order to use TLC. This goes to you as a potential lead.
  • Further advances your expertise by allowing you to offer information on total costs of home ownership.

The TLC search widget is easy to add to your site by inserting a simple programming code. This is a core service of NorthstarMLS available at no additional cost. To get started, view these instructions. To add TLC to your site, broker approval is required.

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