by G. Sax, Director of Growth Management, RESO
Welcome to “Three Questions,” an interview series that introduces you to real estate industry professionals, their businesses and how they interact with real estate standards with a goal of humanizing the tech side of the industry, fun included.
This week’s interview is with Humberto Ramos Martinez, the MLS Director for the Greater McAllen Association of REALTORS® in Texas. We talked about transitioning to the RESO Web API, upward career trajectories and the importance of continuing education. Enjoy!
Q1: It seems that the Greater McAllen Association of REALTORS® took a heavier interest in RESO when Monica Solis Peña was the CEO of your organization. But even after she moved on to the Council of Multiple Listing Services, Greater McAllen has remained committed to RESO standards, including fully transitioning from RETS to the RESO Web API. What advice do you have for other MLSs of your size, approximately 2,000, or smaller that are working toward 100% Web API compliance and trying to stay on top of RESO standards in general?
Humberto: The advice I’m going to give to any MLSs that are still on the fence is to consider it an investment in your organization and your members. The tech is not slowing down, and you don’t want to get behind. The number of vendors using Web API is increasing, and, ultimately, this transition will make you more money because of that.
It’s opened up a lot of opportunities for us, because we’re the largest MLS in our region. So if someone wants to come in from a bigger MLS, like Dallas or Houston, then we are ready to accommodate API-driven requests.
Q2: Your career path at Greater McAllen has been inspiring. You’ve worked as an Administrative Assistant, Social Media Manager, Education Coordinator and now MLS Director for more than a year. What is a goal of yours in your latest role that draws from prior experience?
Humberto: I feel like there sometimes is a lack of communications coming out of MLSs, so I would like to update that portion of our business.
Let’s be honest, talking about data and MLS rules can get a little boring. But having a background in writing allows me to create something more palatable. Our members are people, and I need to be able to interact with them, allow them to ask questions and let them challenge us while still imparting the importance of the MLS.
Oh, and I actually started off as a receptionist at Greater McAllen! As a receptionist, I was the very first person many of our members spoke to. I consider those one-on-one conversations vital to getting me to where I am now.
Q3: You have been supportive of not just RESO’s Working with Real Estate Data course, earning your RED-B designation, but also earning designations like the CMLX from CMLS and C2EX from NAR. How have these designations advanced your knowledge about the industry, and would you say that they prepare you well for career advancement and industry improvement in general?
Humberto: As an MLS staff person, it’s easy to get caught up in day-to-day administration and not understand our “moving parts” more thoroughly. With these courses, the nitty gritty details are covered.
As a kid, I took things apart to see how they worked inside. My grandfather actually had a shop in the back of our house growing up. Getting to see the engines moving was interesting to me. I always wanted to see how the parts worked. So taking these classes, taking apart the MLS and seeing fully inside the industry has been helpful. It has definitely pushed me further.
Through RESO, in particular, I am able to see why our data matters, why we have to map it in a certain way, how our data feeds work and how it is received by the industry.