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RESO CEO Sam DeBord joined Council of Multiple Listing Services (CMLS) CEO Denee Evans and RE/MAX CCO Nick Bailey to discuss a big industry data efficiency initiative: the Listing Exchange and Access Policy (LEAP).

LEAP is a broker-led initiative to get all of a broker’s MLS data organized into a singular data set with singular usage rules and a single point of access. RESO members inspired the effort, and it’s currently being fleshed out at CMLS.

Bailey talked a bit about general brokerage feelings about the LEAP discussion.

“This kind of thing was a hot topic in the past and we’re glad it is again,” said Bailey. “I was around when we introduced IDX/VOW, and I think they’re antiquated today. We’re trying to eliminate friction from a disparate and complex industry landscape.”

Regarding overall goals, Bailey stated, “We have to keep in mind what brokers and agents want but especially what a consumer wants. We are slow to innovate, and we suppress innovation due to the boogeyman of data.”

Bailey forthrightly expressed commonly heard fears. “I don’t want X or Y to have certain kinds of data to do certain things. We worry about devices listening to us, who’s going to have my data, who has what kind of data,” he said. “But data isn’t the boogeyman. Don’t suppress innovation because of a fear of data. Help it drive the elimination of friction. Buyers, sellers and agents want and need us to move at a much faster clip to solve these issues.”

DeBord reiterated that brokers wanted MLS feedback for the boots-on-the-ground impact, and CMLS is looking at LEAP with a consumer focus at this point.

“We need to foster innovation and ensure the gold star standard of MLS data,” said Evans.

CMLS has formed its Data Access Concepts workgroup to review LEAP. “In the past six years, this is the most eyeballs ever on a policy,” stated Evans.

DeBord said he saw what felt like improved relations between MLSs and brokers, and Bailey agreed.

“There’s better collaboration, and more people understand the implications of decisions we make,” said Bailey. “I started selling real estate when they had MLS books, and I’m not 85! We used to be trained to think we have power through siloed information. But the further we get away from silos, people are realizing data is not scary and we need to make it transparent.”

“At RE/MAX, over 50 percent of our HQ employees work on tech and data, including our G73 company, which was just announced, our own data warehouse,” continued Bailey. “We support RESO standards, and it’s what we go by because the more we cooperate there, the bigger the wins we get for all stakeholders in the industry.”

RESO members: see the ongoing discussions on the LEAP-supporting business case in the RESO R&D Workgroup and the technical model that could support LEAP in the Transport Workgroup (Field Metadata Resource discussion and RCP-033).

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