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The Santa Cruz MLS

Jan 15, 2008
If you are going to be represented by a real estate broker either in your quest to purchase a property in the Santa Cruz area or to sell one, then there are a number of things that you want your broker to have. While many of these are skills or traits inherent to the actual broker, there are some things that have nothing to do with the actual broker and everything to do with the way they run their business. While it is not essential that your broker be a part of an MLS, it is at the same time probably going to mean that you find someone to work with a lot easier, cheaper and faster if they are.

MLS is an acronym standing for Multiple Listing Service and what it is quite simply is a collection of databases owned privately. This group of databases share information between them about housing properties for sale and people interested in buying and the real estate brokers can use these services to find people that their clients might be able to work with.

Buyers can find sellers and sellers can find buyers through a multiple listings service and therefore it is a very good idea to go with a real estate broker that makes regular use of MLS listings in their search for someone that fits you well. Practically, this is not going to be difficult because most real estate brokers do regularly look at the Santa Cruz MLS in order to find leads on people for their clients to work with.

Generally speaking, any broker that is a member of the MLS as well as certified by the National Association of Realtors will have their properties listed in the MLS system, which also means that there might be some real estate agents that do not have listings on the service because they either choose to be removed from the MLS or alternatively do not have the NAR certification.

NAR certification does require membership and regular fees and therefore some real estate agents choose to work independently in order to decrease the overhead that they pay for their business.

What this means in practical terms is that the MLS should not be the only resource that your real estate broker uses when they try to find someone for you to work with. While an MLS is a definitely useful source, it is not the only source of information and the most effective real estate brokers have multiple sources and multiple channels to use in order to find you the best deal possible.

Another important limitation to consider when it comes to the MLS has to do with the above stipulation that only NAR licensed brokers will have listings in the MLS. There are going to be people that do not go through brokers, but rather choose to sell their homes by themselves and of course these listings will not be available through the MLS. This is why it is important to have a broker that goes beyond the MLS when they are looking for someone for you.
About the Author
Seb Frey is a Capitola, California Real Estate Broker specializing in Santa Cruz Real Estate. He is fluent in Spanish and enjoys helping people find their piece of the American Dream in Santa Cruz. You can find Seb's blog at SantaCruzHomeBroker.com/blog.
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