The short answer to the question posed in our headline: no.
All agents must be a member of the MLS in order to have access, and its membership is pricey. However, most agents believe it’s worth it, because we’re not quite at the point where agents can do sufficient business based only on syndication sites and other marketing measures.
“Despite the fact that some homes are selling for over asking price in a very brief period of time, this does not apply to every listing and every location,” says Kathleen Malone, an agent with Related Realty. “The MLS is both a great tool for marketing and finding properties, but also a tremendous resource for market data, which is essential and hugely beneficial to my business.”
If the MLS were to have less participation at this point, agents would lose accuracy in broker metric tools, comparative analysis tools and other statistical and informative tools that would help them read the market data and help them in their businesses.
“The MLS provides an unbelievable amount of research that we provide to our clients,” explains Kati Spaniak, a broker with @properties. “Without the MLS, the real estate industry and the consumer would suffer, because there would not be one central location to find the research about homes. We wouldn’t be able to advise our clients the way we do now about the market.”