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The impact TREB ruling will have on agents

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Real Estate Professional | 08 Jun 2016, 08:15 AM Agree 0
Initial worries are overblown, according to one veteran who argues there will always be a need for agent expertise
  • Rick Rose | 08 Jun 2016, 10:49 AM Agree 0
    The best analogy is the golf course down the street. It is a private course and one must pay an initiation fee to join and a yearly fee to stay a member. If I went to the course with my clubs and asked to play the course they would tell me I'm not a member and can't play. Is the competition board going to force all private golf courses to open up their facilities to the public. This will impact not only Real Estate but other industries as well. And if this decision is upheld I think we should look at the structure of the MLS/Board system as a whole because the private information that we pay for and maintain is no longer private so why should we pay for it. There will always be a roll and a place for Realtors but our Professional position will be diminished if everybody has access to the same information as we do.
  • Susan | 08 Jun 2016, 10:55 AM Agree 0
    I've seen this analogy about the boat motor before --- how is that comparable to buying/selling real estate?? It's a ridiculous statement.
  • Tired | 08 Jun 2016, 10:56 AM Agree 0
    I think that with all the mere postings that the Competition has said that we MUST permit, along with this new thing of allowing the public access to the sold data, keeping the MLS online is no longer something that we as agents can afford. It costs money to maintain that data, and if we aren't making the money, we cannot keep paying for the public to have freebies. There is no law stating we MUST keep the MLS online, is there?
  • Steve | 08 Jun 2016, 10:59 AM Agree 0
    Once again, remind me why are we still paying board fees. And OREA dues. And CREA dues. Information - sales information - that we have methodically & painstakingly compiled and built up over the years in our own database just so others can now get free access. Can't they go to the local registry offices and get that info ? I just don't get it. Been in this business for 25 years and these rulings are becoming more and more bizarre.
  • Jon | 08 Jun 2016, 11:12 AM Agree 0
    There are 3 bizarre spin offs from this- the first is that privacy laws prevent us from advertising sale prices, not TREB. The second is that we must maintain secure files for all of our client data which is about to become publicly available, and most importantly, is there anyone in the country who hasn't been able to find out the sale price of their neighbours home? Anyone in the past 15 years?
  • Lawrence Brown | 08 Jun 2016, 11:29 AM Agree 0
    I'm sure members of the legal profession have a big smile.
  • No competition required | 08 Jun 2016, 11:34 AM Agree 0
    The reality is we have traditionally been providers of a service and that includes information. We are bound by so many rules and regulations that it is becoming a competitive disadvantage for a realtor compared to mere posting companies etc. We have competing legislation, ie. privacy act vs competition bureau. Mr. Home buyer wants the virtual reality taken down on the home they bought but have not closed yet so the friends, neighbours, ex wife etc. don't have a good look at his new home. However the public wants all the information we pay to maintain without the constraints of the rules, regulations, licensing requirements. Local moms are creating networking groups to post listings and giving advice, showing a home for their friend, boyfriend etc. to potential buyers with no qualifications or consequences. The guy with the private golf course analogy is right. Take it to the next step, a member joins the club but decides to only want to follow some of the rules. I am just wondering if anyone has ever asked to show one example of where a member of the public was at a disadvantage or suffered a loss because he was unable to find out sale prices of TREB data?
  • Robert | 08 Jun 2016, 11:35 AM Agree 0
    The Agent members of the various boards must pay to access and use the MLS data. If the public wants to use the same data, no problem, they can pay for it. "User pay", what a concept!
  • Dougster | 08 Jun 2016, 11:47 AM Agree 0
    Oh, you are not a member of our board, that's ok. This is all available to you now. Which streets do you wish to see sales history on, and how many blocks? East, West?
    $100.00 for each street, for each 10 block radius and $25 for each year you wish to see our stats. How many years would you like to go back, please?
    Maybe our fees would disappear.
  • Dean | 08 Jun 2016, 12:32 PM Agree 0
    .....except Mr. FSBO seller will only need to pay for the information he needs once, just so he can establish a good list price for himself and his house. Not bad for a mere $100. And a great cash cow for the local boards. The local realtors howver have to keep paying though, month after month, just to keep the system up and running.
  • Gary Little | 08 Jun 2016, 12:51 PM Agree 0
    To be clear, all the Competition Tribunal has ordered is that members of TREB be allowed to show certain Disputed Data on their password-protected Virtual Office Websites. Previously, this data could be shared but only in person or by letter, email, fax, or phone call.

    Some Realtors have different business models than those who insist that they be contacted directly for all information about a property. This ruling will support this new breed of (mostly younger) Realtors. This is what makes Realtors who are stuck in the 1980s so nervous.

    It's just data, people. I actually prefer that clients call me after they've done a bit of homework on their own. No door knocking or cold calling for me -- now that's a break of privacy!
  • Barbara D. | 09 Jun 2016, 10:28 AM Agree 0
    I agree with "TIred". We pay very high Board membership fees to now allow the public FREE access to our information! What are we then still paying Board fees for?!! Other services we don't really need or use!! Note to Real Estate Boards and Brokerages: Lower your fees. Note to other Realtors: Refuse en masse to pay those fees and they will be lowered!! I am also very concerned that this ruling opens the door for the public and shady businesses to eventually view private financial information! How does repairing a boat compare to real estate and finance investing?
  • Tony Vilone Broker since 1976 | 09 Jun 2016, 02:27 PM Agree 0
    Just imagine! No MLS, No CREA, No OREA, No Boards, only individual sole proprietors licensed under RECO, only exclusive listings! History will repeat!
  • Richard Forster | 09 Jun 2016, 04:01 PM Agree 0
    The public didn't fall for this, it's just another idea from the US, where operators use "what is your home worth" to lure victims to websites where the company sells space to make money. The public did not go to any law maker and demand to know what their neighbours home was worth this is an invention that has no purpose. This is not a business model - it's just plain advertising.
  • Home Owner | 09 Jun 2016, 05:52 PM Agree 0
    Time to move Canada's Real Estate Industry into the 21st Century. The information on what houses are bought and sold for is not private information owned by Real Estate Agents. Who owns a home also should not be private information. If Real Estate agents don't want to maintain this database. No problem - I am fully willing to build and maintain this for free. The ability to monetize this will far outweigh the costs of setting it up and maintaining it. If you are an agent working in Toronto or Vancouver right now, you have nothing to complain about. Listing and selling a house is very easy in this seller's market and the standard commission is far beyond the value that the agent is bringing. Imagine we could have a free market for Real Estate Agent commissions like UBER..... Don't worry keep railing against the future and you will also end up like the Music and Taxi Industry, Outdated, Resented and found to have been gouging consumers. Competition is coming I hope you business is ready.
  • Oscar Vidal-Calvet | 10 Jun 2016, 11:19 AM Agree 0
    I personally do not have a problem with sharing information if rules indicate it. ( How do we do with the Privacy Act? )

    -You say: "the standard commission is far beyond the value that the agent is bringing" then I ask you, how come there are not more
    "For Sale By Owner" signs on property lawns? another question; How come there are no more "Mere Posting Listings on MLS"?

    -In Toronto we are about 46,000 realtors and maybe 100,000 homes will be sold this year. (Do you think realtors are making a lot of money?)

    -It is a seller market, no doubt about, but the question is, Who is profiting, if not the Vendor?

    -Finally, if you wrote under the name of "Home Owner" do you have any problem with the people to know your opinions and who you are,
    or you are thinking on the "Privacy" you deserve?
  • | 10 Jun 2016, 02:53 PM Agree 0
    Watch what you wish for about commissions, you think realtors are gouging people.
    Wait and see if you smart asses will enjoy capital gains on your personal property, because that day will come when people aren't paying realtors.
    Paying 3.5% to 5% to sell your house will sound good.
  • Tony Vilone Broker Since 1976 | 11 Jun 2016, 12:14 AM Agree 0
    TREB's membership is increasing by about 350 members per month, in about 5 years we will be 70,000 to 75,000 members totalling about 100,000 licences in Ontario. Competition will be so fierce that Listings will be mere posted for $500.00 dollars on the MLS with no commission offered to the Co-operating Company! (its already happening)
    By then the Buyer's might be willing to sign a Buyer Agency Agreement and negotiate some form of remuneration. ($2,000 to $5,000)

  • | 12 Jun 2016, 10:36 PM Agree 0
    I agree that it may be time we review the MLS system if there is no longer exclusion, who is responsible for continued input, what is to assure quality and accuracy moving forward. Who will responsible for the costs associated?
    Why not have independent Brokerages record the independent internal transactions, develop a systematic co-operation division within the industry between local Brokerages creating a business model of pay to play between Brokerages and locations for all registrants to decide if this is a benefit their business or select not to utilize the option.
  • Geoff | 16 Jun 2016, 01:52 PM Agree 0
    Why don't all boards across the country go and tell the Competition Bureau to go and stick it.

    Abandon the MLS system all together as this was a tool designed from when it was first initialized as information sharing to all agents in their respective provinces.
    All Respective Real Estate Companies Design and control their own Data ( Listings ) and provide information sharing with all fellow Professional agents ( at their clients instructions ) and must follow the respective guidelines Rules and regulations under their local boards for Data sharing information.

    We gave the keys to the castle when all boards decided to bale over to the Bureau when we allowed these FSBO companies access to shared information thru the MLS system that we designed, paid for and maintain from our fees.
    Once again a Loop hole comes up and the competition bureau is all over it and favors these FSBO companies as they don't have the market share and their must be a disadvantage.

    My Personal View : it will never happen as the MLS system is a generating INCOME for all surviving boards across the Country and the local boards will never agree as they will loose their major share of Income.
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