Next RETS Meeting: Austin, TX, April 18-20, 2007
The next RETS Meeting will be held at the DoubleTree Guest Suites Downtown Austin - 303 West Fifteenth (15th) Street, Austin, TX. The Plugfest and compliance testing will be held on Apil 18th. General sessions will be held on April 19th and 20th. The agenda will be available shortly.

RETS2 Specification Adopted – August 2, 2006
On August 2, 2006, the RETS Community voted by super majority to approve the RETS2 Service specification.
The RETS2 Service is the result of two years of workgroups, research and development,
and RETS community outreach. It includes the following features:

  • Web Service access using SOAP and MTOM, with a WSDL file that can be used by standard toolkits to quickly generate a RETS2 client interface.
  • Increased emphasis on security using Web Services Security, with planned support for SAML and X.509.
  • A simplified, SQL-like query language, RQL, that is easy to parse and resolves ambiguities found in DMQL.
  • Simplified metadata, including Vocabularies designed to make client query generation easier and ResourceLists that advertise formats, objects and display information for all a RETS provider's capabilities.
  • Definitions for WellKnown Payloads that extend beyond standard MLS data to include the rest of the Real Estate Transaction Lifecycle (such as Transaction Management Payloads, NRDS Payloads, and Public Records). RETS2's design also allows for the transportation of documents from other standards bodies, such as MISMO and OSCRE/Pisces.
  • Support for custom search and update formats, enabling a RETS provider to support custom xml as well as archives, multi-media, JSON, or other formats.
  • Extensibility, making it easy for RETS providers to extend WellKnown payloads and metadata where necessary to include custom data.

The RET2 Documents can be found here
For additional questions and information about RETS2, contact Paula O'Brien.

RETS 1.7 Goes from Draft To Active; RETS 1.01 Deprecated – August 2, 2006
On August 2, 2006, the RETS community voted by super majority to remove the "draft" status from the RETS 1.7 specification and adopt the specification as final. RETS 1.7 Documents can be found here.

During the same vote, the community deprecated the RETS 1.01 specification.

The vote also specified that compliance be redefined to state that, in order to be
considered compliant, a server or client must be compliant with one of the active RETS specifications. The currently active RETS specifications are: RETS 1.5, RETS 1.7, and RETS2.

Prior compliance wording had stated that in order to be compliant, a server must
support both the current and previous definition of the standard.

About RETS

The Real Estate Transaction Standard is a common language spoken by systems that handle real estate information, such as multiple listing services. A common language enables computers like the one on your desk to receive information from many different real estate systems or MLSs without being specially "trained" to understand the information from each.

Standards like RETS exist in many different fields. Sometimes, the standard simply adopts one of many pre-existing languages that everyone agrees to use. For example, air traffic controllers at international airports all speak English, no matter what their native language, so pilots are guaranteed that they need learn only one language to fly anywhere in the world.

RETS, like many computer standards, is a language that was built for a specific purpose, but the goal is the same: to have all computers that deal with real estate information "speak" the same language, so that you can use the same desktop computer program with any MLS that has adopted RETS.

For software developers and for providers of services like IDX sites, RETS means having to write programs to use only one language, the common language of RETS, in order to work with many different MLS systems. This means lower costs, more products, more competition among vendors, and faster implementations of new systems, all of which directly benefit people who work with real estate information as a living.

We offer a comprehensive overview for anyone who would like more information. The overview covers RETS from many different perspectives.

About This Site
This site is intended to provide information to developers and association users of RETS compliant products. The RETS Community provides an on-line forum and meeting announcements. The standards documents themselves are available from the Documents page. You will find links to Word and PDF versions of the standards documents, including all XML DTDs used with the standard. If you are a software developer, there are additional resources for you in the Resources section, including running demonstrations. The Compliance page offers information on compliance verification tools as well as licensing the use of the RETS logo.

If you have trouble accessing or using any of the material on this site, or
if you have suggestions for improvements, please contact the RETS Webmaster.

Press releases and upcoming event information should be sent to