The statewide MLS approved by C.A.R. has been formed and held its first board meeting May 1. Called the California MLS (CALMLS), the entity adopted bylaws and MLS Rules, and approved a Request for Proposal from the MLS vendors for the computer system operating the statewide service.
In addition, Mike Silvas, a well respected broker-owner from the Napa area, was elected as the CALMLS Chairman of the Board. Silvas will be leading the implementation efforts of the CALMS going forward, which some have called one of the most important and ambitious efforts by C.A.R. to benefit Association members.
The selection process for a vendor or multiple vendors will take place in June of this year. Sixty one MLSs and AORs have sent in letters of intent to be part of the new statewide MLS. There are 70 MLSs in California. While there have previously been several laudable efforts to consolidate and share data in the state, the CALMLS is the only proposed MLS that anticipates complete statewide coverage either by local Associations or MLSs using it directly as their primary system, or by them joining under the hybrid model which allows MLSs to access the benefits of a statewide system, while maintaining a separate system.
Once a vendor is selected the implementation process will begin. The features of the statewide MLS will be guided by principles adopted by the C.A.R. directors in 2005 which call for ensuring that the CALMLS be member-centric. The rules and citations will be uniform across the state. A broker need only join through one participating AOR or MLS to obtain access; his or her salespersons may join through the same or a different participating AOR or MLS. This will allow more choices for members and increased access to data without the confusing array of different rules, enforcement philosophies, and systems.
While access to the system will give brokers and salespersons data to all those MLS systems participating in the CALMLS, it is anticipated that users will have choices of multiple front-end vendors so they may access the technology that works best for them. Once full coverage of the state is obtained, it should also eliminate costly data synchronization between the current multiple number of vendors.
Please feel free to offer your comments about the CALMLS by gong directly to mlsinput (at) car (dot) org. For the most current information on the status of the CALMLS, please visit http://mlsinput.car.org.