The birth of a new regional MLS is as rare as it is remarkable. This week saw the highly anticipated launch of Greater Southern MLS, a broker-led initiative in Louisiana to create a statewide MLS organization to help their agents be more successful and profitable. Brokers of all sizes representing every major brand and several strong independent companies, representing about 1/3 of the REALTORS® in Louisiana and close to 50% of transactions. They reimagined how they, the Participants in the MLS, would reorganize the state’s 9 MLSs and 15,000 Subscribers into one powerful coalition reaching every corner of their state to expand listing exposure and lead generation potential as well as open up new opportunities for referrals.
While the sponsoring brokers of Greater Southern MLS are pushing forth to a new statewide MLS entity, they are completely supportive of maintaining each of their Associations and minimizing disruption for their agents. Their plan continues to enable Louisiana Associations to subsidize their Association operations with MLS revenues. Brokers are NOT going it alone. They are wholesaling Greater Southern MLS services to Association who will re-sell the MLS services to their local members, just as they ALWAYS have. Associations will continue to collect dues from their members and support arbitration and mediation as they always have. As desired, Associations will supplement the robust online and live training provided by Greater Southern MLS and maintain the complete staff they currently employ.
Realizing that agents would hate to change MLS systems, Greater Southern MLS brokers pursued an innovative path in selecting their vendor. People typically prefer the tools they are used to as long as they get the job done. As a result of this recognition, the brokers pressed into the goal of making sure that agents would not need to learn a new MLS system. The service offers the two primary MLS systems already prevalent in the state – Matrix and Paragon.
CRMLS, in an unprecedented move, stepped up to the plate in a big way to help Louisiana brokers deliver a path to realize their vision well-beyond the California region where they normally operate. After learning how to roll up MLS operations for 41 organizations, CRMLS has built the infrastructure and processes to make it feasible to roll MLS services for 10 Associations in Louisiana. They are providing the Greater Southern MLS brokers with a turn key MLS organization. While brokers want a statewide MLS they don’t have the bandwidth or expertise to run it themselves. CRMLS is the ideal answer for them.
The Greater Southern MLS vision became a reality when the progressive and gutsy leaders of the Southwest Louisiana Association of REALTORS® stepped up to the plate to go first. The five parishes they serve will be the first to benefit from a robust suite of 15 technologies, nationwide listing exposure with Broker Public Portal with Homesnap and FREE data feeds.
The expertise of the entire leadership and staff at CRMLS came as a welcome addition to the Greater Southern MLS team. Once the two organizations agreed to terms the CRMLS management, technology, legal, and communications teams sprang into action. You could tell that this was not their first rodeo. Their experience from dozens of MLS conversions in California made the agreement straight forward and simple. CRMLS has heard every fear and encountered every political attack over the years. They don’t operate with anxiety surrounding those distractions anymore. There is an evaluation, an agreement, an executional plan, and action – head down and get the job done. We at WAV Group fully expect that the first conversion will be straight forward and well executed by this exceptionally skilled team.
The end result is that agents across the state will gain access to statewide data while keep the software they are using today all for one statewide MLS fee.
Working with the Associations and brokers on this project to develop this epic collaboration effort is a great joy for the entire WAV Group team. We strive to create positive waves of change for our industry and to create win/wins. We believe this program will help agents better support their clients, allow brokers to save money and better serve the needs of their agents and continue to support Associations to deliv the valuable services to strengthen the real estate industry and help each of their members succeed. It’s rare to experience such a genuine and heartfelt effort to imagine and execute a plan of cooperation and collaboration of this magnitude.
There will be much more to come – in the interim – show some support and welcome this new MLS! Learn more by visiting greatersouthernmls.com