Top 10 RMLSweb Listing Inaccuracies in 2016


It’s not that important to be absolutely certain about listing details before publishing a listing on RMLSweb, is it?

As a matter of fact it’s very important, both to RMLS™ and your fellow REALTORS®.

Accurate listing information is vital to the smooth operation of the real estate market. Correct listing data also facilitates cooperation between REALTORS® engaged in a transaction. This is why RMLS™ puts staff time and resources into reviewing listings. Our staff also relies upon help from subscribers—REALTORS® like you—to help us quickly identify inaccuracies and get them cleaned up for the benefit of all.

In 2016 the RMLS™ Data Accuracy team addressed 6,355 listing inaccuracies that were reported to RMLS™ on RMLSweb. That’s nearly 25 issues addressed each business day! Our Data Accuracy also conducts daily audits which identify additional inaccuracies that get corrected (but that’s another blog post for another time).

What are the top 10 most common listing inaccuracies on RMLSweb? We compiled a list to help RMLS™ subscribers focus their efforts as they’re entering listings using Listing Load. We encourage REALTORS® to get familiar with the details of each of these issues in order to help RMLSweb the most accurate it can be.

1.  Year Built and Year Built Description
Resolved: 1,296 (20.4%)
These can include the Year Built Description not being changed from Under Construction or Proposed to the correct state of construction on the property. If the property is completed at time of closing the Year Built Description value should be changed to New before being marked as Sold. Another common error can occur by accidentally setting the Year Built Description to New when it should have been Resale, because the property was previously occupied.

2. Incorrect/Missing Information
Resolved: 1,153 (18.1%)
This can include many different issues within a variety of fields. Examples are listing the incorrect number of bedrooms, incorrect number of bathrooms, or having the incorrect number of levels listed. This also includes listings with inaccurate square footage and/or not dividing the square footage between levels.

3. Personal Promotion
Resolved: 1,094 (17.2%) [See RMLS™ Rules, Section 3.24]
The rules don’t permit information in the public fields of a listing that identifies the listing agent or their brokerage. This includes names or contact information (or links to such) in the public remarks, photos, or virtual/video tours containing yard signs or other types of branding. Promotion is only allowed in Private Remarks.

4. Address
Resolved: 847 (13.3%)
Adding extra words to a street name, not using the selection boxes for street direction/street suffix, or failing to submit the unit number can cause problems with mapping and/or searching for a property. When these items are found the Data Accuracy team will work to correct the address fields as appropriate. If you know of an issue with the published address, let Data Accuracy know.

5. Owner Name
Resolved: 589 (9.3%)
There are reasons why a seller may wish to have their name withheld from a listing.  If this is the case, use Document 1261 (Owner Name Omission Form) and submit the form to RMLS™. After this form has been submitted, enter “Form 1261 on file” into the Owner Name field on the listing.

6. No Showings
Resolved: 380 (6.0%) [See RMLS™ Rules, Section 3.26]
Any active status listing that is published on RMLSweb must be made available to be shown to prospective clients.

7. Residential Property Type
Resolved: 310 (4.9%)
Is the property attached? Detached? A condo? In a park? Proper property type is essential to ensure that the listing shows up in the right search results and gets seen by the people who would be the most interested in your listing. Document 1270 (Residential Property Types), found on RMLSweb, can be helpful in determining what property type should be noted.

8. Photo(s)
Resolved: 293 (4.6%) [See RMLS™ Rules, Section 3.7]
Common issues found with photos include:
• First listing photo is not of the exterior of building
• Text or graphics appear in photos
• Missing watermarks for “Sample Image” or “Virtual Staging”
• Photo contains children or other inappropriate content.
If the seller wishes to omit listing photos, please submit Document 1263 (Photograph Omission Form).

9. MLS Area  
Resolved: 172 (2.7%)
A listing is sometimes entered with the wrong MLS area or has been listed in two different MLS areas. This can have an impact on details like making the proper school choices available or allowing the correct county to be selected.

10. Duplicate Listings    
Resolved: 131 (2.1%)
Sometimes properties are listed more than once by mistake. This typically happens if two different people in an office input the same listing. It could also happen if a property is being relisted and the old listing does not get canceled prior to the new listing being published.


Have you noticed any of the above issues as you’ve perused listings on RMLSweb? Data accuracy on RMLSweb starts with you, the subscriber. Be sure information in your own listings is correct, and contact RMLS™ Data Accuracy staff if you see issues in other listings—just click the Report Issue button at the bottom of the listing. We appreciate your hard work and enjoy working with you to ensure that RMLSweb listing data is as accurate as possible.


10 Responses to “Top 10 RMLSweb Listing Inaccuracies in 2016”

  1. Lucy March 13, 2017 at 6:45 am #

    What is the opinion of a listing that states no viewing without an offer?

    • Heath Bennett March 17, 2017 at 11:37 am #

      Hello Lucy, That is an interesting scenario that has not been discussed before. We will bring this to the next meeting of the Rules and Regulations Committee. Thanks!

    • Ginni D Snodgrass March 20, 2017 at 3:23 pm #

      The offer I would write before viewing would not really be worth much because there would be so many contingencies and loopholes. Why put everyone through all the necessary paperwork of today’s paperwork for something that may not get beyond the front door.

      This just seems pretentious. Photographs, room counts, and measurements do not tell the whole story. This why people have to go look at so many houses; they never quite live up to what one sees in the listing.. On the other hand, could be missing the buyer who just is not sure about the property, but might fall in love with it once they actually spend time in it. Open the door wider and maybe you might get a bidding war going.

      I know showing a home one’s home is painful, besides being an Oregon broker for over 40 years, I have sold my primary residence while living in it three times, six years ago, three years ago, and six months ago. Each time, I wanted the highest number of agents and prospective buyers in our home to get the highest and best offer.

      When we made a fast two week trip last August to buy a home we would not of had time to fool around with an offer before viewing. I would be suspicious of the seller, suspicious of the house, just not in the mood to play games. After looking at more than 36 houses, we found a home on the seventh day, and were able to meet the seller’s desire for a quick close. A PS to that, we looked at a house on Sunday we liked more than the one we bought, which we were willing to go way above the listing price, but we could not wait until the following Friday or Saturday for her to collect offers and make a decision. Our offer would have been for more than the offer she accepted.

  2. Kris March 13, 2017 at 9:28 am #

    With regard to duplicate listings, many brokers put the original listing in Withdrawn status and then relist the property under a new number rather than cancel the original listing. REASON: Within 2 minutes of a cancelled listing the seller gets hundreds of calls. The calling brokers are NOT checking if the property has been relisted EVEN IF it says so in the body of the cancelled listing. The sellers and listing agents get really frustrated with this experience.

  3. Eric Garland March 13, 2017 at 1:28 pm #

    Regarding #6 `No Showings’ – I presume we’re describing this situation, `Do not disturb tenant, make offer sight unseen, you can see the home during home inspection period.’

    • Heath Bennett March 17, 2017 at 11:37 am #

      Hello Eric, With the exception of Commercial Lease and Auction listings, all active listings shall be available for showing immediately upon entry in the RMLS™ system, excluding listings which require all offers to be made contingent on interior inspection. In addition, listings cannot restrict showing until a future date.

  4. Barbara Roach March 13, 2017 at 6:39 pm #

    I see an increasing number of Auction listings, etc., that prohibit showings. Is this in violation of #6
    6. No Showings
    Resolved: 380 (6.0%) [See RMLS™ Rules, Section 3.26]
    Any active status listing that is published on RMLSweb must be made available to be shown to prospective clients.

    • Heath Bennett March 17, 2017 at 11:36 am #

      Hello Barbara, Good question. The only exception to RMLS™ Rule 3.26 are Auction and Commercial Lease listings, so those Auction listings would not be in violation.

  5. Wendy Macdonald March 14, 2017 at 9:23 am #

    Leaving out the neighborhood or incorrect neighborhoods is a hindrance to search parameters.

  6. Lori Durling March 22, 2017 at 11:38 pm #

    Two questions:

    First, #3 Personal Promotion says, “This includes…photos…containing yard signs…” RMLS Rules 3.24 says, “This rule does not prohibit the incidental inclusion of yard signs in photographs. “ Can you clarify, please?

    Second, #8 Photos says, “Photo contains children or other inappropriate content.” RMLS Rules 3.7 does not say anything about children and does not mention or elaborate on inappropriate content. Would you please clarify this for me too? Just today I ran into a listing with 3 pictures containing children (they were prominent and obvious, though you could not see their faces).

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