Glossary of Terms

Acquisition: The legal process of purchasing another MLS and its assets to expand market area and increase the number of Participants and Subscribers.

Collaboraion: REALTOR® Associations and MLSs working together in a cooperative manner where they would otherwise have operated independently. This can result in forming a new MLS with shared ownership. Also, see Consolidation and Joint Venture.

Common Databases (Shared Database): A shared collection of property information from a single source accessible by two or more MLSs.

Consolidation: When two or more REALTOR® Associations and MLSs join together to form a stronger organization, with the purpose of reducing costs and/or providing better services to Participants, Subscribers and the general public. Examples include: mergers, joint ventures, and other types of collaborative relationships for a permanent, on-going or short-term purpose. Also, see Collaboration and Joint Venture.

Data Share: Two or more MLSs in a contractual agreement to share property information with one another. Also, see common databases and reciprocal log-in access.

Group Buy: A group of MLSs and/or REALTOR® Associations who use their combined purchasing power to achieve the best prices and terms from vendors and suppliers.

Joint Venture: A service structure or relationship of two or more MLSs and/or REALTOR® Associations working together to purchase and provide services to their respective Participants and Subscribers. This can result in the formation of a new MLS or a service initiative. Examples include shared lockbox agreements/purchases, group buys, staff leasing and resource pooling. Also, see Collaboration and Consolidation.

Merger: Two or more MLSs combining their services into a single legal entity serving the members of more than one REALTOR® Association. Also, see Regional MLS.

Offers of Compensation: A fixed dollar amount or percentage of the gross sales price (or where authorized net sales price) that cooperating brokers are entitled to receive for being the procuring cause of the sale.

Regional MLS: An MLS servicing two or more REALTOR® Associations and/or other MLSs around an enlarged geographic region and market area. Regional MLSs can cross and expand into more than one state.

Resource Pooling: When MLSs combine their assets (staff, property, intellectual property, etc.) to serve Participants and Subscribers with provisional and scalable services. Also, see Service Center and Staff Lease.

Reciprocal Log-in Access: The ability to access property information from another MLS using a designated log-in ID and password; with no comingling of property information between the services.

Service Center: A business location or online presence used to service remote areas of an MLS by providing training and staff support (administrative and technical). These centers can help with purchasing MLS services and products, and repairing lockboxes and other equipment.

Shared Vendor Contract: Two or more MLS working together to contract for services with a single vendor. This may include varying levels of collaboration among the MLSs involved, including shared services, common or separate databases, consistent or different MLS fields and MLS rules, and more. Wholesale billing is most common where each local MLS bills MLS fees to their own participants and subscribers.

Staff Lease (Staff Share): An arrangement in which an MLS uses employees from another MLS or REALTOR® Association on a ongoing or temporary basis.

Wholesaling Services: An MLS buying goods and services from vendors at one price, and then re-selling those goods and services to other MLSs, REALTOR® associations, or directly to real estate firms, at a marked-up retail price.

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