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New Data Dictionary Aims to Lessen Confusion with MLS Listings

By Mike Wheatley | January 18, 2012
Data dictionary for MLS listings

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What with so many different MLS systems being used in the US, it’s little surprise that the descriptions, data and terminology used can vary wildly from listing to listing. Some of the most common differences we seen in MLS listings include discrepancies regarding the amount of square footage a property encompasses, the number of bathrooms, bedrooms, and even how long a property has been listed.

So home buyers and real estate professionals will no doubt welcome a new initiative by the Real Estate Standards Organization (RESO) to try and make things more consistent on a nationwide scale. Inman News reports that the organization plans to introduce a new “Data Dictionary” which will introduce common vocabulary that can be used for MLS descriptions.

RESO is planning a meeting in April of this year, when it hopes to be able to adopt the new initiative, although the organization is the first to admit that unifying more than 900 MLS's data fields will pose a few challenges.

The goal of the Data Dictionary is to provide standard definitions which can be used in the different fields on MLS entries, so that we can see more consistency nationwide.

Rebecca Jensen, of, and the current chairperson for RESO’s board, explained that the problem is “there are more than 900 MLSs, all describing the same data in a slightly different way.” Jensen told Inman News that RESO’s goal was to try and find a common way to describe things so buyers and agents using different MLSs would find things less confusing.

Mike Wheatley is the senior editor at Realty Biz News. Got a real estate related news article you wish to share, contact Mike at [email protected].
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