Welcome to another edition of “Ask the MLS.” Here, we talk to people running innovative MLSs around the country and ask them questions about their markets, their members and what keeps them up at night.
Today’s post features Michael Mercurio, CEO of Greater San Diego of REALTORS and San Diego MLS. Greater San Diego Association of REALTORS serves 20,000 agents. Here’s what Michael had to say:
1. San Diego is a very hot real estate market. What challenges are home searchers facing as they look for a home?
San Diego is one of the most exciting real estate markets in the country, which presents challenges and opportunities for home buyers and agents.
Home searchers are bombarded with information and must determine the best source for their search, which can make it more difficult to find homes that meet their criteria. This adds frustration to what should be a fun, rewarding and exciting time in their life.
This is why we feel that the work we do for our members and for the real estate market, as a whole, is so important. Through the criteria and standards that we set for our members, home buyers can rest assured that they have the most accurate information and the services they need to make their purchasing process as enjoyable and rewarding as possible.
Additionally, when someone works with one of our members, they have the opportunity to work with an agent that has access to local support, the latest and greatest tools, and the ability to find the best homes to meet their purchasing criteria.
2. How have your members changed over the last five years? Have they gotten more demanding in terms of the services they expect from their MLS?
As the market dynamics change and the real estate market has grown over the last five years, the landscape has changed on many fronts. Technology and tools have become more and more important for our members to support their clients and have access to information on the go.
They want and need access to information while in the field with buyers and to respond to the needs of their sellers.
We are proud of the fact that we offer the best services and technology tools, like Homesnap, to our members to allow them to respond and support their clients real time.
Our goal is to understand the needs of the market, the trends in technology, and the selling and buying processes to give our members access to tools before they need them.
Being local in San Diego helps us understand the market, understand the needs of the buyers and sellers, and the ability to offer local training and support for our members. Home sellers and buyers now require continuous support and communication from their real estate agent, which requires our members to have the tools and support necessary to provide this.
This is why we offer our members service and support from our local support team, seven days a week, from our San Diego offices to ensure they have the support they need when working with their clients and running their business.
3. iBuyers are heading to San Diego. How are you responding to iBuyers? Do you think they pose a significant threat to the industry?
We have a mission of providing the best tools and services, leading access to information, and the best service for our members. These things do not change with the introduction or entry of other services and companies to the market.
In fact, by being local and having a local team to support our members, we are able to be the local expert on the market and needs to buyers, sellers and agents, which increases the demand for our services offerings.
We ensure that our members are equipped and armed with the latest information and tools to support sellers and buyers in the market. Our members expect more from us because we’ve always given them the tools they need to support their clients.
The entry of platforms such as iBuyers into the market puts home buyers and sellers at a disadvantage. A real estate transaction without the expertise of a REALTOR® adds confusion to the selling and buying process.
We know that our members provide their clients with the expertise and knowledge, the right information, accurate market data, and local support to make informed purchasing decisions.
4. San Diego realtors are very enthusiastic users of Homesnap. What feature(s) have they responded best to?
Our members love using Homesnap because it allows them to access and manage their listings on the go. This gives them the ability to manage their business from anywhere to support their clients in real time.
We’ve also found that our members like the client interaction capabilities and that Homesnap ensures that all communications are DRE compliant.
5. If you could swap places with the head of another MLS for a month, where would it be?
We have big plans for the services and programs we will offer our members. I’m too excited about what we have ahead of us to even think about another MLS.
San Diego is one of the most dynamic markets in the country and we have the opportunity to build and grow our service offering to support this. Our members are very active and drive more business in this market than any other service. I feel like I’m in the best place I could be!