MyFloodStatus Report Helps Local Buyer Identify Flood Risk

After a snowy February followed by heavy rain, many rivers are flooding across Minnesota. Some rivers are at or near record levels. Check out the dilemma one NorthstarMLS agent was in with his client before using a MyFloodStatus report to determine the property's true flood status. 

A buyer was interested in purchasing property adjacent to a property he already owned and lived in. The property seller had owned the home for a long time, no longer had a mortgage, and said her late husband had told her that only the back corner of the property was in a flood zone. She didn’t have any documentation to prove the exact current flood status of the property.

Action Taken
The buyer’s real estate agent used our structure-based flood report to confirm the true flood status of the property.

A MyFloodStatus report confirmed that in fact a large portion of the house was in a Special Flood Hazard Area, or SFHA, and would require flood insurance with a mortgage. The FEMA map had changed and been updated in 2015, but the seller did not become aware because there was no mortgage on the home at the time. With the MyFloodStatus structure-based flood determination, the buyer was able to make an educated decision on how to move forward based on confirmed flood status.

“Running your report saved a lot of time, money and frustration. Best money I’ve spent.”
– Michael H. Real Estate Agent, NorthstarMLS

MyFloodStatus Flood Reports can be ordered through NorthstarMLS at discounted pricing ($25 per report). Go to the “External Links” section and click on MyFloodStatus.

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Did you know that in 2017, the typical age of a buyer rose to 45 and the typical home seller was 55 years old? The National Association of Realtors® recently conducted its annual survey of recent home buyers and sellers provides insight into detailed information about their experiences with this important transaction. The infographic below highlights some characteristics of buyers and sellers in 2017. If you want to read the entire NAR Buyer and Seller Profile report, click here.
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Earlier this week, we announced improvements to the Client Portal, including improved displays. Those improvements are now in place.  The Portal works basically the same, so your clients do not need to re-learn it. Most of the changes are cosmetic.

If you haven’t already watched, take a moment to watch our five minute tutorial video. You can share this video with your clients, and it is available in the Help section of the Portal.

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Would you let a surgeon operate on you if she only had half the information? Yet today’s homebuyers typically focus on their loan total monthly payment, and that can be less than half their home costs.

Give your buyers TLC  – True Lifestyle Cost – an exciting core service from NorthstarMLS and there’s no extra charge to you.

Home buyers will be able to see and compare homes based on estimate total costs when searching for a home such as commuting expenses, utility bills, daycare cost, and more. You can give your buyer something they won’t be able to get from a Zillow search. It’s simply a smarter way to compare homes and neighborhoods.

Discover TLC: Click on “True Lifestyle Cost” from the External Links in Matrix and try TLC today!

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Rules Roundup – Unauthorized Access to Listing Property

The temps are rising, the snow is melting and we recently entered Daylight Saving Time. The spring real estate market is about to be in full swing! Whether you represent the buyer or the seller, showing requests tend to increase as the temps climb. Remember to always arrange showings with the listing office before bringing clients out for showings even if the property is vacant. If a mistake occurs and you accidentally enter a property without an appointment, contact the listing agent immediately to let them know what happened. Respecting privacy and security is an important professional responsibility.

Entering any listed property without prior authorization is considered a Serious Violation and can come with a fine of $1,000. Continued repeat violations by the same agent can result in doubling of the last fine amount. An additional $1,000 fine can be assessed by your Association for a lockbox rule violation.

A recent comment from a NorthstarMLS user of this happening
“I have had a lot of this happening on my listings lately, and the agents do not think it is an issue, and nor do some of their brokers. Not only is it a violation of MLS and COE, but it is illegal and creates a huge liability for the agent if they or their client were to get hurt, etc.” 

Questions? Our rules & regs staff is here to help! If you have questions about NorthstarMLS rules and regs, contact us at or call 651-251-3210.

Showing Etiquette This infographic illustrates some showing etiquette tips that we’ve received from agents, along with some plain common sense to help ensure a pleasant house hunting experience for everyone involved.

Submit Your Own Rules Roundup Question or Topic! Do you have a question or topic that you would like to see featured as a Rules Roundup article? We’ll supply the answers. Just send your idea to We will use one submission each month and the winner will receive a $30 Caribou Coffee gift card!

Rules Roundup On Demand Want to check out older Rules Roundup topics? Click here to view an archive of previous Rules Roundup entries.

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Tip of the Week
Auto Email Reverse Prospect Check Box

If you’ve worked with a buyer, then you’ve likely set up an Auto Email through NorthstarMLS Matrix. But did you know about the Reverse Prospecting feature of Auto Emails?

It allows listing agents to see who may be interested in their sellers’ listings. Reverse prospecting gives listing agents contact information for the agents who have client Auto Emails with search criteria that match their listings. Only the buyer’s rep agent name and contact information (not the client’s) will be displayed as a Reverse Prospecting match. Maybe the property has an upcoming price reduction or recent remodeling that the list agent wants to share with you — it can be a great way to help find a match for your buyer.

Each time you set up an Auto Email, the “Make available for Reverse Prospecting” checkbox is checked by default. If you want to opt out of Reverse Prospecting for your Auto Emails, you must uncheck the box for each Auto Email you set up.

Please respect your fellow agents and use courtesy when you receive a Reverse Prospecting email that you’re opted into, as it’s not intended to be spam.

Do you want more information on how Reverse Prospecting works for the listing agent? Tune in for next Monday’s tip of the week for details!

If you have any questions, contact the NorthstarMLS Help Desk (651-251-5456 or toll free 1-877-251-5455).

Thanks to Jenna Sanford of Keller Williams Integrity NW (Elk River) for submitting her Tip of the Week question on ‘using Reverse Prospecting’. Jenna will receive
a $30 Caribou Coffee gift card for her submission!

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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