MLS: What Is It & How Does It Work?

As previously mention MLS is sort of like an online database of real estate listings. This comprehensive information is shared amongst all real estate professionals. When a home comes up for sale, a listings brokers enters the data into the software. They then share any commission with the broker who recruits or finds the buyer for the property.


All of the information about the property will be added, such as:


       The home address

       Age of the home

       Size (sq ft) of the home, number of bedrooms and bathrooms

       Any home upgrades that were done

       Amenities in the area (schools, shopping, etc)

       Financing types the seller will accept

       Photos and a virtual tour of the home


However, many homebuyers are under the assumption they can somehow gain access to this information, but the information they receive is very limited, outdated and inaccurate.

Finding MLS Listings

Be careful when searching for homes for sale. You want to ensure that the data you receive is comprehensive and not just another list.


Speak to a real estate agent, they’ll get you setup with a private home search to that you can get the information you need, including the most comprehensive report. The goal here is to make sure the data you’re receiving isn’t limited.


To do this all you need to do is provide your agent with your name, email and preferences. They’ll then add this information to the MLS search engine and you’ll automatically receive updated informational emails for new listings. This is much different from what you’ll find anywhere else.

Conducting MLS Searches

If you’re just starting your home search that’s great! Your real estate agent can help get you started by customizing your search so that you receive the most up-to-date listings automatically. If you’re simply looking for data emails on pending or sold properties, or reduced prices, then you will need to request it, since you’d typically only receive information for listings that are active.


When customizing your search you can include things like:


       Postal code

       Search radius

       Street or suburb

       Map search within specified boundaries

       Price ranges


       Extras (pools, spas, etc)


What you require can be defined even further, but this all depends on your priorities. However, the more requirements you have, the less opportunity that becomes available. Setting more general and broad searches, will produce more opportunity.