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NAR's Clear Cooperation Policy

WHAT IS THE POLICY?

"Listings of Real Property which are listed subject to a real estate broker’s license and located within the service area of the BSC MLS must be submitted to the MLS for cooperation with other MLS participants by 11 pm on the third (3rd) weekday after a listing agreement goes into effect, OR within one (1) weekday of marketing a property to the public; certain exclusions may apply to vacant land. Public marketing includes, but is not limited to, flyers displayed in windows, yard signs, digital marketing on public-facing websites, brokerage website displays (including IDX and VOW), digital communications marketing (email blasts), multi-brokerage listing sharing networks, applications available to the general public."

IN LAYMAN'S TERMS

If you take a listing that is considered a required property type, on 40 acres or less, located within the BSC MLS service area, you have 3 weekdays to enter it. If at any point prior to day 3 you begin to market that property to the public, you now have 1 weekday to enter it. The Clear Cooperation policy does not apply to Vacant Land but is still subject to the policy on “Late Entry of Required Listing”.

If your seller wants to withhold their property off the MLS for longer than 3 weekdays, or circumstances arise that are preventing you from entering by the deadline, you need to submit the "Office Exclusive form" to the BSC MLS office. When an agent reports a potential violation of the rule, the burden of proof lies on the agent reporting the violation and BSC MLS staff. Clear and convincing evidence must be present to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the agent is in violation of the rule. The Board of Directors will review the evidence if necessary.

WHAT IF MY SELLER DOESN’T WANT IT ON THE MLS, OR THE PROPERTY ISN’T READY TO BE ON THE MLS?

If the seller refuses to permit their Residential or Land listing to be disseminated by the service, and the property will not be advertised to the public through any of the methods mentioned in the Clear Cooperation policy, you may then take the listing “Office Exclusive” and such listings shall be filed with the service, but not disseminated to the participants. Filing of the listing should be accompanied by the "Office Exclusive" form. The form must be signed by the seller indicating that he/she does not want their Residential or Land listing to be immediately disseminated by the service and must be submitted to the BSC MLS by 11 pm on the third (3rd) weekday after a listing agreement goes into effect.

EXPLAIN “OFFICE EXCLUSIVE”

“Office Exclusive” listings may only be marketed within the listing brokerage and brokerages within the firm. If at any point during the term of the listing agreement the property is marketed to the public, the listing must be submitted to the MLS by 11pm the following weekday.

With an “Office Exclusive” listing, direct promotion of Residential and Land listings between the brokers and licensees affiliated with the listing brokerage or brokerages within the firm, and one-to-one promotion between these licensees and their clients is NOT considered public advertising.

WHO CREATED THE POLICY?

The policy was created by the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) Emerging Trends & Technology Committee, the NAR MLS Issues and Policies Committee, and the NAR Board of Directors

WHY?

For years The National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) has been tracking the erosion of cooperation among MLS Participants/Subscribers. This erosion seems to be provoked by actions that benefit the REALTOR® over their Seller’s needs and is a blatant violation of the REALTOR’s® ethical and MLS cooperation obligations.

This policy is intended to reintroduce the important role Cooperation plays in ensuring and facilitating the competitive nature of organized real estate. This vital process of competition has been shown to be exceedingly pro-consumer. The policy comes at a time when some have been and are currently innovating the death of the organized real estate marketplace. This policy has been endorsed by NAR legal counsel and passed with overwhelming majorities in the policy-making process.

FAIR HOUSING:

By not disseminating listings through the broad exposure of the MLS, some are choosing to exclude in favor of “Exclusive” networks or focused advertising. This leads to a concern that many protected classes of buyers are not allowed equal opportunity at homes that other buyers are afforded.

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