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CREW poll: Leave MLS alone

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Guest | 20 Sep 2012, 09:44 PM Agree 0

About 92 per cent of the hundreds of readers responding to a recent online poll said “no, the Competition Commission is not right in calling for more of a seller`s personal information on the Multiple Listing Service.”
The poll results come on the heels of the Tribunal rejecting the TREB Constitutional Challenge in court on Tuesday, throwing another dramatic twist into the battle that has been ongoing for over three years.
The Competition Bureau aims to make more of the personal information of sellers available to the general public, something the Toronto Real Estate Board has vocally opposed. And if the stats are anything to go by, most Canadian homeowners agree.
According to a third-party survey conducted by Angus Reid, 75% of those asked believed personal info should remain confidential.
Several other surveys point in the opposite direction, with consumers calling for the kind of information that would allow them to dispense with the services of Realtor and go directly to the seller.
In place of the private MLS service, many of its features exclusively available to Realtors, the Competition Bureau is hoping to introduce Virtual Office Websites, password-protected sites that would allow consumers unrestricted access to the database. If the Bureau is successful, consumers would also have access to a seller’s name, address, property floor plans, mortgage details, the property’s history on the market as well as other sensitive information.
TREB President Richard Silver has vowed that the board will do everything in its power to keep buyer and seller information private.
“TREB strongly believes that Realtors have an obligation to protect consumers’ personal information,” he says. “That’s why TREB and Realtor members are fighting for the privacy rights of consumers.”
  • adam | 25 Sep 2012, 04:39 PM Agree 0
    having minimum background on this topic, I was expecting that the 'seller personal information' was going to consist more of...umm... the sellers information apposed to property information.

    a property owners name can be found at city hall and address, property floor plans, mortgage details, the property’s history on the market isn't considered personal information to me and is already out there and can be found if you know where to look.
  • David Pylyp | 25 Sep 2012, 06:49 PM Agree 0
    You said: Competition Bureau is hoping to introduce Virtual Office Websites, password-protected sites that would allow consumers unrestricted access to the database.

    VOWs are currently available under the consent of the realtor that supervises their search.

    Claims about property details are absolutely unfounded IF anyone can go to court house, search the PIN of Lot and Plan for $8.00

    Consumers are already empowered and frustrated by realtors and their practices. We need to define and explain what value we bring to a transaction.

    David Pylyp
    Living in Toronto and Waiting for my VOW
  • Rick Allenberg | 25 Sep 2012, 08:15 PM Agree 0
    So why must Realtors disgorge all their work and information to the public free of charge? There is not such thing as a free lunch so why expect Realtor to provide the lunch?
    The comp bureau is pushing the socialist agenda to new heigths. Get off our backs and take on somebody your own size like the gas companies or is that asking a bit much?
  • Michael Perretta | 25 Sep 2012, 08:35 PM Agree 0
    Many Readers' Comments Are Missing The point:
    Of course you can get the "public" part of the information, but the public can NOT get information that is shared only among licensed / insured realtors, such as clients availability, lockbox arrangements, whether it is an estate sale, etc..... that is the real value of our MLS and communication among realtors to provide confidential quality service for our clients.
  • karen amos | 25 Sep 2012, 09:21 PM Agree 0
    Hasn't the Competition Bureau got anything better to do than make Realtor's lives miserable? Is she just trying to make a name for herself. Where are our rights as Realtors?

    Why doesn't 'she' go after the banks!! I am so sick of all this.
    I get transparency but I think there's more to our personal privacy as well. We don't publish the sellers personal info and I don't think we should be forced to.
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