When you’re searching through pages of real estate listings trying to find that perfect cottage, the term MLS ® keeps coming up. So just what is this strange thing that seems to permeate every website you visit related to buying property?
How does the MLS® work?
M.L.S. stands for “Multiple Listing Service” and is basically a large database assembled by cooperating real estate brokers. This data pool is then offered to the public as a tool to search properties efficiently. You can find properties in a certain area, price range etc. as well as map searches. This system also allows brokerages to view each others listings for homes, cottages, vacant land and commercial properties as well as properties for lease.
How does it benefit someone searching for a property?
Instead of searching each individual brokerage or agents website for their listings, the MLS ® allows people to search a consolidated list by area, property type, price etc. There’s a new system called DDF which now allows brokers to opt into a shared pool for listings from other brokerages which in turn allows agents to populate their own websites similar the MLS.
At times you may find property for sale on individual agents websites and you can’t seem to find them anywhere else. Some agents prefer to have “exclusive listings” which keeps them in-house and they’re not part of the MLS database and therefore don’t show up on the system. They could also be part of the DDF shared pool so their listings may only show up in their brokerages sites.
Our website pulls in property listing from many brokerages in Muskoka, Parry Sound and beyond. This lets us tailor our webpages to certain search criteria helpful for cottage real estate such as “search by lake” or “search by area” . We also have a email program that sends out alerts as new properties come to the market that fits a clients requirements. One of our most popular page is our “New Muskoka Cottage Listings” page which generate many views every day. People want to get as much information as fast as possible!