The Multiple Listing Service is where nearly all information about homes for sale and historical sale prices originates, and where agents work together to get homes bought and sold fairly and efficiently. How the MLS Works for you

How Homes Are Found

Search the market

The Multiple Listing Service will guide your search and get you the location, features, and price point that meets your needs.

Go deeper and get closer

The Multiple Listing Service will get you detailed information not available on public apps and websites and arrange showings.

Know how much to offer

The Multiple Listing Service can be used to analyze up-to-the-minute information on comparable homes and recent sale prices in order to make sure your offer is competitive.

How Homes Are Sold

Price it right

Historical and current home sales information from the Multiple Listing Service will be used to guide you on when to sell, and for how much.

Get your home seen everywhere

When your agent places your home on the Multiple Listing Service, non-confidential information is displayed on nearly every real estate brokerage website in town and on top real estate search apps and websites.

Get other agents working on your behalf

Listing your home on the Multiple Listing Service puts it into the hands of nearly every agent representing active buyers. This network of relationships is how most homes get sold.

What is a REALTOR®?

The terms agent, broker, and REALTOR® are often used interchangeably but have very different meanings. For example, not all agents (also called salespersons) or brokers are REALTORS®. Learn who is a REALTOR® and the reasons why you should use one. As a prerequisite to selling real estate, a person must be licensed by the state in which they work, either as an agent/salesperson or as a broker. Before a license is issued, minimum standards for education, examinations, and experience, which are determined by New York State, must be met.

After receiving a real estate license, most agents go on to join their local association of REALTORS®, the New York State Association of REALTORS®, and the National Association of REALTORS®, the world’s largest professional trade association. Then they can call themselves REALTORS®.

The term “REALTOR®” is a registered collective membership mark that identifies a real estate professional who is a member of the National Association of REALTORS® and subscribes to its strict Code of Ethics (which in many cases goes beyond state law). In most areas, it is the REALTOR® who shares information on the homes they are marketing, through a Multiple Listing Service (MLS). Working with a REALTOR® who belongs to an MLS will give you access to the greatest number of homes and buyers.

How can a REALTOR® help you

There are many important reasons to use a REALTOR®.
Some of the services your REALTOR® will provide for you include:

For Sellers:

  • Walking you through the process of selling your home
  • Providing comparable information about other properties that have sold
  • Supplying information regarding local customs and regulations
  • Including your home in the Global MLS
  • Overseeing the marketing of your home
  • Handling inquiries from potentially interested buyers
  • Negotiating the sales contract Alerting you to potential risks
  • Complying with the disclosures required by law
  • Providing you with an estimate of the closing costs you will incur
  • Assist you during the contract to the closing process

For Homebuyers:

  • Helping you determine how much home you can afford. Often a REALTOR® can explain alternative financing methods
  • Can tell you what personal and financial data to bring with you when you apply for a loan
  • Familiar with current real estate values, taxes, utility costs, municipal services, and facilities, and may be aware of local zoning changes that could affect your decision to buy
  • Will research your housing needs in advance through the Global MLS
  • Showing you only those homes best suited to your needs
  • Negotiating the sales contract.
  • A REALTOR® is sensitive to the importance you place on this major commitment you are about to make. Look for a real estate professional to facilitate negotiation of a win-win agreement that will satisfy both you and the seller.

Buying/Selling on Your Own

“You can get rid of the broker, but you cannot get rid of the broker’s work” is an old caution for those who intend to o er their homes “For Sale By Owner” (FSBO) or for those buyers who wish to buy without professional representation. Selling or buying on your own is not an easy undertaking. It requires a significant amount of time to study the process, understand your obligations, and do some of the complicated work that a real estate agent does. In addition, selling or buying on your own requires extra help from outside professionals, such as a REALTORS®, accountants or attorneys for some of the jobs that require specific expertise.

Here are several important considerations:

  • As a personal safety measure, only show your house to those individuals with whom you’ve made a prior appointment that’s been confirmed by phone.
  • Find out your legal obligations.
  • Hold out for a buyer with written pre-qualification from a lending institution.
  • Don’t price the house so low that it sells too quickly – pay for a market value appraisal by an experienced appraiser.

How to choose a REALTOR®

Without any obligation, you can invite local REALTORS® to visit your home and give you a “listing presentation” about why they’re the best ones to market it for you or to help you buy a home. Two to three presentations will probably give you a good opportunity for choice. A listing presentation includes having the REALTOR® review with you the reasons why you should work with that particular individual and providing you with information that will assist you in making initial decisions about selling or buying.

Recent laws in every state have defined the duties of someone specifically retained as a real estate agent. Most states require a real estate agent to explain his or her role at the outset of any conversation. A professional agent will promptly provide this such a disclosure.

Look for an agent who:

Is a member of the local board or association of REALTORS®

Advises you on how to prepare your home for the market

Explains and discloses agency relationships (the role of the agent, i.e., who they are representing–the buyer or the seller) early on in the process, at “serious first contact”

Shows some enthusiasm, listens attentively, instills confidence, operates in a professional manner, and has a complementary personality style to yours

Discover the perfect match for your sale quickly and easily today