Multiple Listing Service Rules and Regulations

Hillsdale County Board of REALTORS®
Multiple Listing Service Bylaws, Rules and Regulations

Updated June 1, 2011

CONTENTS

Article I-Name…............................................................................3
Article II-Purpose…........................................................................3
Article III-Service Area…................................................................3
Article IV-Participation…..................................................................3-4
Article V-Service Charges….............................................................4
Article VI-Governing Body….............................................................5
Article VII-Application…...................................................................5
Article VIII-Membership Responsibility…............................................5
Article IX-Distribution of Governing Documents…...............................5
Article X-Confidentiality and Accuracy of MLS Information…................5-8
Article XI-Listing Procedures…..........................................................8-10
Article XII-Additional Listing Criteria…...............................................10-12
Article XIII-Selling Procedures….......................................................12-14
Article XIV-Refusal to Sell….............................................................14-15
Article XV-Prohibitions .....................................................................15
Article XVI-Division of Commissions…...............................................15-18
Article XVII-Limitations on Use of MLS Information…..........................18-19
Article XVIII-Waiver Policy….............................................................19
Article XIX-Amendments to Rules and Regulations…...........................19
Article XX-Additional Provisions…......................................................19-20
Article XXI-Fees…............................................................................20
Article XXII-Internet Data Exchange…...............................................20-31
Article XXIII-Enforcement of Rules or Disputes…................................31-32
Addendum A-Sanctions Policy….........................................................32
Addendum B-Change of MLS Providers…............................................32

Article I- Name

The name of this organization shall be the Multiple Listing Service of the Hillsdale County Board of REALTORS®®, Inc., hereinafter referred to as the Service.

Article II-Purpose

A Multiple Listing Service is a means by which authorized Participants make blanket unilateral offers of compensation to other Participants (acting as subagents, buyer agents, or in other agency or non-agency capacities defined by law); by which cooperation among Participants is enhanced; by which information is accumulated and disseminated to enable authorized Participants to prepare appraisals, analyses, and other valuations of real property for bona fide clients and customers; by which Participants engaging in real estate appraisal contribute to common databases; and is a facility for the orderly correlation and dissemination of listing information so Participants may better serve their clients and the public. Entitlement to compensation is determined by the cooperating broker’s performance as a procuring cause of the sale.

Article III Service Area
The area within which the Service shall function shall at all times be coextensive with or within the territorial jurisdiction of the Hillsdale County Board of REALTORS®®.

Article IV-Participation

Section 1. Participation Defined

Any REALTOR® Member of this or any other Board who is a principal, partner, or corporate officer, or branch manager acting on behalf of the principal, without further qualification, as otherwise stipulated in these bylaws, shall be eligible to participate in Multiple Listing upon agreeing in writing to conform to the Rules and Regulations thereof and to pay the costs incidental thereto. However, under no circumstances is any individual or firm, regardless of membership status, entitled to multiple listing service “membership” or “participation” unless they hold a current, valid real estate broker’s license offer or accept compensation to and from other participants or are licensed or certified by an appropriate state regulatory agency to engage in the appraisal of real property. Use of information developed by or published by a Board Multiple Listing Service is strictly limited to the activities authorized under a Participant’s licensure(s) or certification and unauthorized uses are prohibited. Further, none of the foregoing is intended to convey “participation” or “membership” or any right of access to information developed by or published by a Board Multiple Listing Service where access to such information is prohibited by law.

Mere possession of a broker’s license is not sufficient to qualify for MLS participation. Rather, the requirement that an individual or firm offer or accepts cooperation and compensation means that the participant actively endeavors during the operatio of its real estate business to list real property of the type listed on the MLS and/or to accept offers of cooperation and compensation made by listing brokers or agents in the MLS. “Actively” means on a continual and ongoing basis during the operatioin of the participant’s real estate business. The “actively” requirement is not intended to preclude MLS participation by a participant or potential participant that operates a real estate business on a part-time, seasonal, or similarly time-limited basis or that has its business interrupted by periods of relative inactivity occasioned by market conditions. Similarly, the requirement is not intended to deny MLS participation to a participant or potential participant who has not achieved a minimum number of transactions despite good faith efforts. Nor is it intended to permit an MLS to deny participation based on the level of service provided by the participant or potential participant as long as the level of service satisfies state law. (Adoped 11/08)

The key is that the participant or potential participant actively endeavors to make or accept offers of cooperation and compensation with respect to properties of the type that are listed on the MLS in which participation is sought. This requirement does not permit an MLS to deny participation to a participant or potential participant that operates a “Virtual Office Website” (VOW) (including a VOW that the participant uses to refer customers to other participants) if the participant or potential participant actively endeavors to make or accept offers of cooperation and compensation. An MLS may evaluate whether a participant or potential participant actively endeavors during the operation of its real estate business to offer or acept cooperation and compensation only if the MLS has a reasonable basis to believe that the participant or potential participant is in fact not doing so. The membership requirement shall e applied in a nondiscriminatory manner to all participants and potential participants. (Adopted 11/08)

Section 2. Application for Participation

Application for participation shall be made in such manner and form as may be prescribed by the Board of Directors of the Service and made available to any REALTOR® (principal) member of this or any other Board requesting it. The application form shall contain a signed statement agreeing to abide by these Bylaws and any other applicable Rules and Regulations of the Service as from time to time amended or adopted.

Section 3. Discontinuance of Service

Participants of the Service may discontinue the service by giving the Service 14 days written notice and may reapply to the Service after three months by making formal application in the manner prescribed for new applicants for participation provided all past dues and fees are fully paid.

Section 4. Subscribers

Subscribers (or users) of the MLS include non-principal brokers, sales associates, and licensed appraisers affiliated with Participants. The following persons may have access to the service under the supervision of the Participant, but are not required to be Subscribers: affiliated unlicensed clerical staff and personal assistants.

Article V-Service Charges

The charges made for participation in the Service shall be as determined, and as amended from time to time by the Hillsdale County Board of REALTORS® Board of Directors.

Article VI-Governing Body

Section 1. Government of the Service

The government of the Service shall be vested in the Board of Directors of the Hillsdale County Board of REALTORS® as defined in the Hillsdale County Board of REALTORS® Board Bylaws.

Article VII-Application

The following rules and regulations of the Multiple Listing Service of the Hillsdale County Board of REALTORS®, hereinafter referred to as “MLS”, are applicable to member firm Participants and Subscribers.

Article VIII-Membership Responsibility

Section 1.

All member firm Participants shall abide by the Bylaws and Rules and Regulations of the MLS and the Multiple Listing Policy of the National Association of REALTORS®. Failure on the part of any member firm Participant or its licensees to receive a copy of any of the above mentioned Bylaws, Rules and Regulations and MLS Policy shall not relieve anyone of the responsibility for any violation thereof.

(a) The member firm Participant shall be deemed responsible for any of its licensees’, violations as recited in Section (1) above.

(b) Licensees whose names appear on the Department of Licensing Report will be billed unless a waiver has been provided.

Article IX-Distribution of Governing Documents

Section 1.

The Bylaws and Rules and Regulations of the MLS and the Multiple Listing Policy and Code of Ethics of the National Association of REALTORS® shall be published and made available to member firm Participants in such a manner as established by the Hillsdale County Board of REALTORS® Board of Directors.

Article X-Confidentiality and Accuracy of MLS Information

Section 1. Confidentiality of MLS Information

Any information provided by the MLS to the Participants shall be considered official information of the service. Such information shall be considered confidential and exclusively for the use of the Participants and those Participants who are licensed or certified by an appropriate state regulatory agency to engage in the appraisal of real property and licensed or certified appraisers affiliated with such Participants.
(a) Access to MLS information not available by public access (other than described in© below), is available only by subscription and is accessed by Participants and Subscribers via assigned passwords. Passwords are confidential and not to be shared in any form with non-subscribers. Violation of this article and potential penalties are addressed in the Sanctions Policy of this document.

(b) MLS Not Responsible for Accuracy of Information

The information published and disseminated by the Service is communicated verbatim, without change by the Service, as filed with the Service by the Participant. The Service does not verify such information provided and disclaims any responsibility for its accuracy. Each Participant agrees to hold the Service harmless against any liability arising from any inaccuracy or inadequacy of the information such Participant provides.

(c) Access to Comparable and Statistical Information

Board Members who are actively engaged in real estate brokerage, management, mortgage financing, appraising, land development, or building, but who do not participate in the MLS, are nonetheless entitled to receive, by purchase or lease, all information other than current listing information that is generated wholly or in part by the MLS including “comparable” information, “sold” information, and statistical reports. This information is provided for the exclusive use of Board Members and individuals affiliated with Board Members who are also engaged in the real estate business and may not be transmitted, retransmitted or provided in any manner to any unauthorized individual, office or firm except as otherwise provided in these Rules and Regulations.

(d) By the act of submitting any property listing content to the MLS, the Participant represents that he/she has been authorized to grant and also thereby does grant authority for the MLS to include the property listing content in its copyrighted MLS compilation and also in any statistical report on comparables. Listing content includes, but is not limited to, photographs, images, graphics, audio and video recordings, virtual tours, drawings, descriptions, remarks, narratives, pricing information, and other details or information related to listed property.

(e) All right, title and interest in every multiple listing compilation created and copyrighted by the Hillsdale County Board of REALTORS®, and in the copyrights therein, shall at all times remain vested in the Hillsdale County Board of REALTORS ®.

(f) Each Participant or Subscriber shall be entitled to access MLS compilations. The Participant or Subscriber shall pay such access fees as are set by the Board. Participants shall acquire by such lease only the right to use the MLS Compilations in accordance with these rules.

The term MLS Compilation, as used in Section D herein, shall be construed to include any format in which property listing data is collected and disseminated to the Participants, including, but not limited to, bound book, loose-leaf binder, computer data base, card file, or any other format whatever.

This section should not be construed to require the Participant to lease a copy of the MLS compilation for any licensee affiliated with the Participant who is engaged exclusively in a specialty of the real estate business other than listing and selling real property, and who does not, at any time, have access to nor use of the MLS information or MLS facility of the board.

(g) Distribution

Participants shall at all times maintain control over and responsibility for each copy of any MLS compilation purchased from or leased to them by the Association, and shall not distribute any such copies to persons other than subscribers who are affiliated with such Participant as licensees, those individuals who are licensed or certified by an appropriate state regulatory agency to engage in the appraisal of real property, and any other subscribers as authorized pursuant to the governing documents of the MLS. Use of information developed by or published by an Association Listing Service is strictly limited to the activities authorized under a Participant’s licensure(s) or certification and unauthorized uses are prohibited. Further, none of the foregoing is intended to convey “Participation”, or “Membership” or any right of access to information developed by or published by an Association MLS where access to such information is prohibited by law.

(h) Display

Participants and those persons affiliated as licensees with such Participants, shall be permitted to display the MLS compilations to prospective purchasers only in conjunction with their ordinary business activities of attempting to locate ready, willing, and able buyers for the properties described in said MLS compilation.

(i) Reproduction

Participants or their affiliated licensees shall not reproduce any MLS compilation or any portion thereof except in the following limited circumstances: Participants or their affiliated licensees may reproduce from the MLS compilation, and distribute to prospective purchasers, a reasonable number of single copies of property listing data contained in the MLS compilation which relate to any properties in which prospective purchasers are or may, in the judgment of the Participant or their affiliated licensees, be interested.

Reproduction made in accordance with this rule shall be prepared in such a fashion that the property listing data of properties other than that in which the prospective purchaser has expressed interest, or in which the Participant or the affiliated licensees are seeking to promote interest, does not appear on such reproduction.

Nothing contained herein shall be construed to preclude any Participant from utilizing, displaying, distributing, or reproducing property listing sheets or other compilations of data pertaining exclusively to properties currently listed for sale with the Participant.

Any MLS information, whether provided in written or printed form, provided electronically, or provided in any other form or format, is provided for the exclusive use of the Participant and those licensees affiliated with the Participant who are authorized to have access to such information. Such information may not be transmitted, retransmitted, or provided in any manner to any unauthorized individual, office or firm.
None of the foregoing shall be construed to prevent any individual legitimately in possession of current listing information, “sold” information, “comparable,” or statistical information from utilizing such information to support an estimate of value on a particular property for a particular client. However, only such information that a Board or Board owned MLS has deemed to be confidential and necessary to support the estimate of value may be reproduced and attached to the report as supporting documentation. Any other use of such information is unauthorized and prohibited by these Rules and Regulations.

It is intended that the Participant be permitted to provide prospective purchasers with listing data relating to properties which the prospective purchaser has a bona fide interest in purchasing or in which the Participant is seeking to promote interest. The term “reasonable,” as used herein, should therefore be construed to permit only limited reproduction of property listing data intended to facilitate the prospective purchaser’s decision-making process in the consideration of a purchase. Factors which shall be considered in deciding whether the reproductions made are consistent with this intent, and thus “reasonable” in number, shall include, but are not limited to, the total number of listings in the MLS compilation, how closely the types of properties contained in such listings accord with the prospective purchaser’s expressed desires and ability to purchase, whether the reproductions were made on a selective basis, and whether the type of properties contained in the property listing data is consistent with a normal itinerary of properties which would be shown to the prospective purchaser.

Article XI-LISTING PROCEDURES

Section 1.

(a) All listings of real or personal property which are listed subject to a real estate broker’s license, and which are taken by Participants or subscribers on an exclusive right to sell listing form, shall be entered into the system within 72 hours after the starting date of the contract and all necessary signatures of sellers have been obtained, with the exception of weekends, holidays and postal holidays.

Note 1: The MLS shall not require a Participant to submit listings on a form other than the form the Participant individually chooses to use provided the listing is of a type accepted by the Service, although a “property data form” may be required as approved by the MLS. However, the MLS, through its legal counsel:
(1) May reserve the right to refuse to accept a listing form which fails to adequately protect the interests of the public and the Participants.
(2) Assure that no listing form filed with the MLS establishes, directly or indirectly, any contractual relationship between the MLS and the client (buyer or seller).
(3) The MLS shall accept exclusive right to sell listing contracts and exclusive agency listing contracts, and may accept other forms of agreement which make it possible for the listing broker to offer cooperation and compensation to the other Participants of the MLS acting as subagents, buyer agents or both.
(4) The listing agreement must include the seller’s authorization to submit the agreement to the MLS, including the seller’s authorization of the listing price. (5) The different types of listing agreements include:
(aa) Exclusive Right to Sell—The exclusive right to sell listing is the conventional form of listing submitted to the MLS in that the seller authorizes the listing broker to cooperate with and to compensate other brokers.
(bb) Exclusive Agency—The exclusive agency listing also authorizes the listing broker, as exclusive agent, to offer cooperation and compensation on blanket unilateral bases, but also reserves to the seller the general right to sell the property on an unlimited or restrictive basis.

(cc) Open—Open listings are not accepted except where required by law because the inherent nature of an open listing is such that it usually does not include the authority to cooperate and compensate other brokers and inherently provides a disincentive for cooperation.
(dd) Net—The service may not accept net listings because they are deemed unethical and, in most states, illegal.

Note 2: Exclusive agency listings and exclusive right to sell listings with named prospects exempted should be clearly distinguished by a simple designation such as a code or symbol from exclusive right to sell listings with no named prospects exempted since they can present special risks of procuring cause controversies and administrative problems not posed by exclusive right to sell listings with no named prospects exempted. Care should be exercised to ensure that different codes or symbols are used to denote exclusive agency and exclusive right to sell listings with prospect reservations.

NOTE 3: The MLS does not regulate the type of listings its members may take. This does not mean that the MLS must accept every type of listing. The MLS shall decline to accept open listings (except where acceptance is required by law) and net listings and it may limit its service to listings of certain kinds of property. But if it chooses to limit the kind of listings it will accept, it shall leave its members free to accept such listings to be handled outside the MLS.

NOTE 4: The MLS may accept exclusively listed property that is subject to auction.
(i) Auction Properties
(1) The following must be posted in “Marketing Remarks”: This property will be offered at auction or sold at absolute auction, and may be purchased with the representation of any licensed REALTOR®.
(2) Information about the time, date and place of sale MUST be posted in Agent Remarks, but may NOT be posted in Marketing Remarks.
(3) To post an auction property as “sold” in the MLS: “Other” must be checked under status, in the financing drop-down box

“Sold at absolute auction” and the type of sale (cash, mortgage, land contract, etc.) must be posted in the blank field adjacent to the financing box.
OR “Sold at auction” must be checked under status in the Financing drop-down box.

(b) A sale price acceptable to and approved by the seller as of the date of the listing must be posted in the MLS for all auction properties.

(c) Under “additional remarks,” brokers may note a request from sellers that a listing not be placed in the MLS. A copy of the listing contract must be provided to Hillsdale County Board of
REALTORS ® office upon request (within 24 hours) should a question arise as to why the listing is not in the service.

(d) Online offices may input their own listings and make any necessary changes and updates to the listing.

(e) The Board office will accept a change form, email or phone call to report changes to listings. Changes must be reported within 72 hours.

(f) Listings of business opportunities are not required to be entered in the MLS system. If entered in the MLS system, it may be with or without complete information.

Article XII - Additional Listing Criteria

Section 1. Listings Subject to Rules and Regulations of the Service

Any listing agreement taken by a member firm Participant, to be processed by the MLS is subject to the MLS Rules and Regulations immediately upon the signature(s) of the seller(s) being obtained.

Section 2. Detail on Listings Entered into the Service

A listing agreement or property data form (including the online form used by the service) shall be complete in every detail ascertainable. All fields required by the MLS, as determined by the Hillsdale County Board of REALTORS ® Technology Committee, shall be filled in with the appropriate content and NOT left blank or filled in with zeros, or other numbers or symbols indicating data has not been obtained.

Note: Required fields determined by the Hillsdale County Board of REALTORS® Technology Committee shall be documented in a separate Board publication entitled: “MLS Data Requirements.” Failure to comply with the requirements so noted will subject the offender to penalties under Addendum A-Board Sanctions Policy.

Section 3. Exempted Listings

Any listing which a seller has requested NOT to have entered into the MLS is exempt if the request has been noted and signed by the seller.

Section 4. Change of Status of Listing

Any change in listed price or other changes in the original listing agreement shall be made only when authorized in writing by the owner and listing broker, and shall be entered into the MLS within 72 hours (except weekends, holidays and postal holidays) after said authorized change is received by the listing broker. All change forms must have the sellers and broker/sales agents signatures and seller’s date of signature. If an office is contacted regarding the signatures they have 24 hours to submit the information to the Board Office.

Section 5. Withdrawal of Listing Prior to Expiration

Listed property may be withdrawn from the MLS by the listing broker before the expiration date of the listing agreement provided the withdrawal has been duly requested and authorized by the seller and the member firm Participant.

Section 6. Contingencies Applicable to Listings

Any contingency in a listing shall be explicitly noted in the listing agreement and processed to the membership accordingly. (See Article XIII, Section (9), Note 1)
Section 7. Listing Price Specified

The full gross listing price stated in the listing contract shall be included in the information published in the MLS compilation of current listings unless the property is subject to auction. The MLS shall not accept net listings or open listings.

Section 8. Listing Multiple Unit Properties

All properties which are to be sold or which may be sold separately must be indicated individually in the MLS. When part of a listed property has been sold, proper notification should be made in the MLS.

Section 9. No Control of Commission Rates or Fees Charged by Participants

The MLS shall not fix, control, recommend, suggest, or maintain commission rates or fees for services to be rendered by Participants. Further, the MLS shall not fix, control, recommend, suggest or maintain the division of commissions, or fees between cooperating Participants or between Participants and non-Participants.

Section 10. Expiration, Extension, and Renewal of Listings

Listings filed with the multiple listing service will automatically be removed from the compilation of current listings on the expiration date specified in the agreement, unless prior to that date the MLS receives notice that the listing has been extended or renewed. (Amended 11/01)

If notice of renewal or extension is received after the listing has been removed from the compilation of current listings, the extension or renewal will be published in the same manner as a new listing. Extensions and renewals of listings must be signed by the seller(s), filed with the listing office and available to the service at its request. Any extension or renewal of a listing must be entered into the MLS within 72hours.

Section 11. Termination Date on Listings

Listings entered into the service shall bear a definite and final termination date as negotiated between the listing broker and the seller.

Section 12. Listings of Suspended Participants

When a Participant (broker) of the service is suspended from the MLS for failing to abide by a membership duty (i.e., violation of the Code of Ethics, Association Bylaws, MLS Bylaws, MLS Rules and Regulations, or other membership obligation except failure to pay appropriate dues, fees or charges), all listings currently filed with the MLS by the suspended Participant shall, at the Participant’s option, be retained in the service until sold, withdrawn, or expired, and shall not be renewed or extended by the MLS beyond the termination date of the listing agreement in effect when the suspension became effective. If a Participant has been suspended from the Association (except where MLS participation without Association Membership is permitted by law) or MLS (or both) for failure to pay appropriate dues, fees or charges, an Association MLS is not obligated to provide MLS services, including continued inclusion of the suspended Participant’s listings in the MLS compilation of the current listing information. Prior to any removal of a suspended Participant’s listings from the MLS, the suspended Participant should be advised in writing of the intended removal so that the suspended Participant may advise his/her clients. All listings of the suspended Participant will be withdrawn.

Section 13. Listings of Expelled Participants

When a Participant (broker) of the service is expelled from the MLS for failing to abide by a membership duty (i.e., violation of the Code of Ethics, Association Bylaws, MLS Bylaws, MLS Rules and Regulations, or other membership obligations except failure to pay appropriate dues, fees or charges), prior to removal of any of the expelled Participant’s listings, the expelled Participant should be advised in writing of the intended removal so that the expelled Participant may advise his/her clients. All listings of the expelled Participant will be withdrawn.

Section 14. Listings of Resigned Participants

When a Participant (broker) withdraws from the MLS, the MLS is not obligated to provide services, including continued inclusion of the withdrawn Participant’s listings in the MLS compilation of current listing information. Prior to removal of any of a withdrawn Participant’s listings from the MLS, the withdrawn Participant should be advised in writing of the intended removal so that the withdrawn Participant may advise his/her clients.

Section 15. Jurisdiction

Only listings of the designated types of property located within the jurisdiction of the MLS are required to be submitted to the service. Listings of property outside the MLS’s jurisdiction will be accepted if submitted voluntarily by a Participant, but cannot be required by the service. (Amended 11/01)

Article XIII -Selling Procedures

Section 1. Showings and Negotiations

Appointments for showings and negotiations with the seller for the purchase of listed property filed with the MLS shall be conducted through the listing broker except under the following circumstances:

(a) The listing broker gives the cooperating broker specific authority to show and/or negotiate directly, or

(b) After reasonable effort, the cooperating broker cannot contact the listing broker or his representative. However, the listing broker, at his option, may preclude such direct negotiations by cooperating brokers.

Section 2. Presentation of Offers

The listing broker must present the offer as soon as possible, or give the cooperating broker a satisfactory reason for not doing so.

Section 3. Disclosing the Existence of Offers

Listing brokers, in response to inquiries from buyers or cooperating brokers shall, with the seller’s approval, disclose the existence of offers on the property. Where disclosure is
authorized, listing brokers shall also disclose, if asked, whether offers were obtained by the listing licensee, by another licensee in the listing firm, or by a cooperating broker. (Adopted 1/03, Amended 11/08)

Section 4. Availability of Listed Property

Listing brokers shall not misrepresent the availability of access to show or inspect listed property.

Section 5. Submission of Written Offers

The listing broker shall submit to the seller all written offers until closing unless precluded by law, government rule, regulation, or agreed otherwise in writing between the seller and the listing broker. Unless the subsequent offer is contingent upon the termination of an existing contract, the listing broker shall recommend that the seller obtain the advice of legal counsel prior to acceptance of the subsequent offer. (Adopted 11/87)

Participants representing buyers or tenants shall submit to the buyer or tenant all offers and counter-offers until acceptance, and shall recommend that buyers and tenants
obtain legal advice where there is a question about whether a pre-existing contract has been terminated. (Amended 11/05)

Section 6. Right of Cooperating Broker in Presentation of Offer

The cooperating broker, subagent or buyer agent, or his representative shall have the right to participate in the presentation to the seller or lessor of any offer he secures to purchase or lease. The cooperating broker does not have the right to be present at any subsequent discussion or evaluation of that offer by the seller(s) or lessor and the listing broker. However, if the seller or lessor gives written instructions to the listing broker that the cooperating broker not be present when an offer the cooperating broker secured is presented, the cooperating broker has the right to a copy of the seller’s/lessor’s written instructions. None of the foregoing diminishes the listing broker’s right to control the establishment of appointments for such presentations.

Section 7. Right of Listing Broker in Presentation of Counter-Offer

The listing broker or his representative has the right to participate in the presentation of any counter-offer made by the seller or lessor. He does not have the right to be present at any discussion or evaluation of a counter-offer by the purchaser or lessee (except where the cooperating broker is a subagent). However, if the purchaser or lessee gives written instructions to the cooperating broker that the listing broker not be present when a counter-offer is presented, the listing broker has the right to a copy of the purchaser’s or lessee’s written instructions.

Section 8.

No one shall divulge to anyone the terms, price or conditions recited in any offer to purchase presented cooperatively, on a specific property before the offer is presented to the seller.

Section 9. Reporting Sales to the Service.

Status changes, including final closing of sales, shall be reported to the Multiple Listing Service by the listing broker within 72 hours after they have occurred. If negotiations were carried on under Section 1 (a) or (b) hereof, the cooperating broker shall report accepted offers to the listing broker within 24 hours after occurrence and the listing broker shall report them to the MLS within 72 hours after receiving notice from the cooperating broker.(Amended 11/08)

NOTE 1: The listing agreement of a property filed with the MLS by the listing broker should include a provision expressly granting the listing broker authority to advertise; to file the listing with the MLS; to provide timely notice of status changes of the listing to the MLS; and to provide sales information including selling price to the MLS upon sale of the property. If deemed desirable by the MLS to publish sales information prior to final closing (settlement) of a sales transaction, the listing agreement should also include a provision expressly granting the listing broker the right to authorize dissemination of this information by the MLS to its participants. (Amended 11/01)

Section 10. Reporting Resolutions of Contingencies

The listing broker shall report to the MLS within 72 hours that a contingency on file with the MLS has been fulfilled or renewed, or the agreement is cancelled.

Section 11. Advertising of Listing Filed with the Service

A listing shall not be advertised by any Participant, other than the listing broker, without the prior consent of the listing broker.

Section 12. Reporting Cancellation of Pending Sale

The listing broker shall report immediately in the MLS the cancellation of any pending sale that has been previously posted in the MLS, and the listing shall be reinstated immediately.

Article XIV - Refusal to Sell

Section 1.

If the seller of any listed property filed with the MLS refuses to accept a written and executed offer satisfying the price, terms and conditions stated in the listing contract, such information shall be transmitted to the MLS office regarding status of the listing which, in turn shall immediately be transmitted to all Participants.

Article XV -Prohibitions

Section 1. Information for Participants Only

Any listing filed with the service shall not be made available to any broker or firm not a member of the MLS without the prior consent of the listing broker.

Section 2.

Only the “For Sale” signs of the listing broker may be placed on a property.

Section 3. Sold Signs

Prior to closing, only the sold sign of the listing broker may be placed on a property, unless the listing broker authorizes the cooperating (selling) broker to post such a sign. (Amended 4/96)

Section 4.

Participants shall not solicit a listing on property filed with the service unless such solicitation is consistent with Article 16 of the REALTORS® Code of Ethics, its Standards of Practice and its Case Interpretations.

NOTE 1: This section is to be construed in a manner consistent with Article 16 of the Code of Ethics and particularly Standards of Practice 16-4. This section is intended to encourage sellers to permit their properties to be filed with the service by protecting them from being solicited, prior to expiration of listing, by brokers and sales persons seeking the listing upon its expiration. Without such protection a seller could receive hundreds of calls, communications, and visits from brokers and sales persons who have been made aware through MLS filing of the date the listing will expire and desire to substitute themselves for the present broker. This section is also intended to encourage brokers to participate in the service by assuring them that other Participants will not attempt to persuade the seller to breach the listing agreement or to interfere with their attempts to market the property. Absent the protection afforded by this section, listing brokers would be most reluctant to generally disclose the identity of the seller or the availability of the property to other brokers. This section does not preclude solicitation of listings under the circumstances otherwise recognized by the Standards of Practice related to Article 16 of the Code of Ethics.

Article XVI -Division of Commissions

Section 1. Compensation Specified on Each Listing

The listing broker shall specify, on each listing filed with the multiple listing service, the compensation offered to other multiple listing service Participants for their services in the sale of such listing. Such offers are unconditional except that entitlement to compensation is determined by the cooperating broker’s performance as the procuring cause of the sale (or lease) or as otherwise provided for in this rule. The listing broker’s obligation to compensate any cooperating broker as the procuring cause of the sale (or lease) may be excused if it is determined through arbitration that, through no fault of the listing broker and in the exercise of good faith and reasonable care, it was impossible or financially unfeasible for the listing broker to collect a commission pursuant to the listing agreement. In such instances, entitlement to cooperative compensation offered through MLS would be a question to be determined by an arbitration hearing panel based on all relevant facts and circumstances including, but not limited to, why it was impossible or financially unfeasible for the listing broker to collect some or all of the commission established in the listing agreement; at what point in the transaction did the listing broker know (or should have known) that some or all of the commission established in the listing agreement might not be paid; and how promptly had the listing broker communicated to cooperating brokers that the commission established in the listing agreement might not be paid. (Amended 11/98)

In filing a property with the multiple listing service of an association of REALTORS®, the Participant of the service is making blanket unilateral offers of compensation to the other MLS Participants, and shall therefore specify on each listing filed with the service, the compensation being offered to the other MLS Participants. Specifying the compensation on each listing is necessary, because the cooperating broker has the right to know what his compensation shall be prior to his endeavor to sell. (Amended 11/96)

The compensation specified on listings filed with the multiple listing service shall appear in one of two forms. The essential and appropriate requirement by an association multiple listing service is that the information to be published shall clearly inform the Participants as to the compensation they will receive in cooperative transactions, unless advised otherwise by the listing broker, in writing, in advance of submitting an offer to purchase. The compensation specified on listings published by the MLS shall be shown in one of the following forms:
(1). by showing a percentage of the gross selling price
(2). by showing a definite dollar amount (Amended 11/95)

Note: MLSs may also, as a matter of local discretion, allow participants to offer cooperative compensation as a percentage of the net sales price, with the net sales price defined as the gross sales price minus buyer upgrades (new construction) and seller concessions (as defined by the MLS unless otherwise defined by state law or regulation). (Adopted 5/08)

The listing broker retains the right to determine the amount of compensation offered to other Participants (acting as subagents, buyer agents, or in other agency or non-agency capacities defined by law) which may be the same or different. (Amended 11/96)

This shall not preclude the listing broker from offering any MLS Participant compensation other than the compensation indicated on any listing published by the MLS, provided the listing broker informs the other broker, in writing, in advance of submitting an offer to purchase, and provided that the modification in the specified compensation is not the result of any agreement among all or any other Participants in the service. Any superseding offer of compensation must be expressed as either a percentage of the gross sales price or as a flat dollar amount. (Amended 11/95)

Note 1: The association multiple listing service shall not have a rule requiring the listing broker to disclose the amount of total negotiated commission in his listing contract, and the association multiple listing service shall not publish the total negotiated commission on a listing which has been submitted to the MLS by a Participant. The association multiple listing service shall not disclose in any way the total commission negotiated between the seller and the listing broker.

Note 2: The listing broker may, from time to time, adjust the compensation offered to other multiple listing service Participants for their services with respect to any listing by advance published notice to the service so that all Participants will be advised. (Amended 4/92)

Note3: The multiple listing service shall make no rule on the division of commissions between Participants and non-Participants. This should remain solely the responsibility of the listing broker.

Note 4: Multiple listing services, at their discretion, may adopt rules and procedures enabling listing brokers to communicate to potential cooperating brokers that gross commissions established in listing contracts are subject to court approval and that compensation payable to cooperating brokers may be reduced if the gross commission established in the listing contract is reduced by a court. In such instances, when the gross commission is subject to court approval, either the potential reduction in compensation payable to cooperating brokers or the method by which the potential reduction in compensation will be calculated must be clearly communicated to potential cooperating brokers prior to the time they submit an offer that ultimately results in a successful transaction. (Amended 5/08)

Note 5: Nothing in these MLS rules precludes a listing Participant and a cooperating Participant, as a matter of mutual agreement, from modifying the cooperative compensation to be paid in the event of a successful transaction. (Adopted 11/05)

Note 6: Multiple listing services must give participants the ability to disclose to other participants any potential for a short sale. As used in these rules, short sales are defined as a transaction where title transfers, where the sale price is insufficient to pay the total of all liens and costs of sale, and where the seller does not bring sufficient liquid assets to the closing to cure all deficiencies. Multiple listing services may, as a matter of local discretion, require participants to disclose potential short sales when participants know a transaction is a potential short sale. In any instance where a participant discloses a potential short sale, they may, as a matter of local discretion, also be permitted to communicate to other participants how any reduction in the gross commission established in the listing contract required by the lender as a conditon of approving the sale will be apportioned between listing and cooperating participants. All confidential disclosures and confidential information related to short sales, if allowed by local rules, must be communicated through dedicated fields or confidential “remarks” available only to participants and subscribers. (Amended 5/09)

Section 2. Disclosing Potential Short Sales

Participants must disclose potential short sales (defined as a transaction where title transfers, where the sale price is insufficient to pay the total of all liens and costs of sale and where the seller does not bring sufficient liquid assets to the closing to cure all deficiencies) when reasonably known to the listing participants. (Amended 5/09)

When disclosed, participants may, at their discretion, advise other participants whether and how any reduction in the gross commission established in the listing contract, required by the lender as a condition of approving the sale, will be apportioned between listing and cooperating participants. (Adopted 5/09)
Where participants communicate to other participants how any reduction in the gross commission established in the listing contract required by the lender as a condition of approving the sale will be apportioned between the listing and cooperating participants, listing participants shall disclose to cooperating participants in writing the total reduction in the gross commission and the amount by which the compensation payable to the cooperating broker will be reduced within 24 hours of receipt of notification from the lender. (Adopted 5/10)

Section 3. Participant as Principal

If a Participant or any licensee (or licensed or certified appraiser) affiliated with a Participant has any interest in a property, the listing of which is to be disseminated through the MLS, that person shall disclose that interest when the listing is filed with the MLS and such information shall be disseminated to all MLS Participants.

Section 4. Participant as Purchaser

If a Participant or any licensee (including licensed and certified appraisers) affiliated with a Participant wishes to acquire an interest in property listed with another Participant, such contemplated interest must be disclosed, in writing, to the listing broker not later than the time an offer to purchase is submitted to the listing broker. (Adopted 2/92)

Section 5. Dual or Variable Rate Commission Arrangements

The existence of a dual or variable rate commission arrangement (i.e. one in which the seller/landlord agrees to pay a specified commission if the property is sold/leased by the listing broker without assistance and a different commission if the sale/lease results through the efforts of a cooperating broker; or one in which the seller/landlord agrees to pay a specified commission if the property is sold/leased by the listing broker either with or without the assistance of a cooperating broker and a different commission if the sale/lease results through the efforts of a seller/landlord) shall be disclosed by the listing broker by a key, code, or symbol as required by the MLS. The listing broker shall, in response to inquiries from potential cooperating brokers, disclose the differential that would result in either a cooperative transaction, or, alternatively, in a sale/lease that results through the efforts of
the seller/landlord. If the cooperating broker is a buyer/tenant representative, the buyer/tenant representative must disclose such information to their client before the client makes an offer to purchase or lease. (Amended 5/01)

Article XVII -Limitations on Use of MLS Information

Section 1.

Use of information from the MLS compilation of current listing information from the Board’s “statistical report,” or from any “sold” or “comparable” report of the Board or MLS for public mass-media advertising by an MLS Participant or in other public representations may not be prohibited.

However, any print or non-print forms of advertising or other forms of public representations based in whole or in part on information supplied by the Board or its MLS must clearly demonstrate the period of time over which such claims are based and must include the following, or substantially similar, notice:

“Based on information from the Board/Association of REALTORS® (alternatively, from the Hillsdale MLS) for the period (date) through (date).”

Article XVIII -Waiver Policy

Section 1.

Upon application and approval at the discretion of the Board of Directors of the Hillsdale County Board of REALTORS® Multiple Listing Service a service waiver may be granted for those individuals employed by or affiliated as an independent contractor with the Participant who does not actually have access to and use the service. (This waiver does not apply to the REALTOR® Participant.)

A waiver is granted for the balance of the current calendar year. The exemption, if recommended, shall be effective when approved by the Board of Directors. The exemption for any individual shall automatically be revoked upon the individual’s utilization of the service in any manner.

If the Hillsdale County Board of REALTORS® Multiple Listing Service is not notified of reinstatement of the user and the user is found using the system, the Participant will be found in violation and fined $200 in addition to retroactive MLS fees back to the date of waiver. At the time a waiver is requested to be reinstated prior to the next calendar year the past fees and/or fines may be waived at the discretion of the Hillsdale County Board of REALTORS® Multiple Listing Service Directors.

Article XIX -Amendments to Rules and Regulations

Section 1.

Amendments to the Rules and Regulations of the service shall be by consideration and approval of the Board of Directors of the Hillsdale County Board of REALTORS®.

Article XX Additional Provisions

Section 1. Sales of Property Not Listed in this MLS.

An agent is allowed to file a sale to the MLS by completing a selling and financing form with as much information as possible, with the actual sale price reported. The reported sale price will be used for the production figures of the office and agents for the annual MLS production reports. The profile may be sent to the MLS office to allow MLS staff to input it in the system. Photos and sketches will not be required, and sellers’ signatures will not be required. The remarks section must explain that this listing is only a record of a sale.

Section 2. Reporting of Sales to the MLS.

Requests from a buyer or seller that the sale price of a property be kept confidential, must be made in writing and submitted to the Board Office upon request. One dollar ($1.00) may be entered as the sale price under such circumstances. The buyer or seller must, however, give approval for the agent to allow the actual sale price to be disclosed for appraisals and
the compilation of agent sales statistics.

Article XXI-Fees

Section 1. Listings

Any listing input by Board staff into any Multiple Listing Service, shall be input for a fee to be set from time to time by the Board of Directors and to be paid by the listing agent or broker.

Section 2. Reciprocal Listings

The Hillsdale County Board of REALTORS® has reciprocal agreements with other area associations. The reciprocal listing input fee will be charged at the same rate the reciprocal board charges the Hillsdale Board, except that the agent shall also pay a listing input fee to the Hillsdale Board Office as noted in Section 1, above.

Section 3. Application Fees

The application fee for a new office, or for a current member office principal ownership change, is $200.00. This is not to be construed that multiple owners have to pay the fee to join the MLS.

Section 4. Appraisers

Licensed appraisers who are REALTOR® members only, who belong to another Board or Association shall be allowed access to the MLS Online system, upon payment of a set-up fee of $200 and the same monthly MLS fees as are charged to other members.

Section 6. Books

Member purchase of MLS books is not mandatory.

Article XXII-Internet Data Exchange

Section 1. IDX Defined

IDX affords MLS Participants the option of authorizing display of their listings on other Participants’ Internet Web sites.

Section 2. Authorization

Participants’ consent for display of their listings by other Participants pursuant to these rules and regulations is presumed unless a Participant affirmatively notifies the MLS that the Participant refuses to permit display (either on a blanket or on a listing-by-listing basis). If a Participant refuses on a blanket basis to permit the display of that Participant’s listings, that Participant may not download or frame the aggregated MLS data of other Participants. Even where Participants have given blanket authority for other Participants to display their listings on IDX sites, such consent may be withdrawn on a listing-by-listing basis as instructed by the seller.

Section 3. Participation

Participation in IDX is available to all MLS Participants who consent to display of their listings by other Participants.

Section 4.

Participants must notify the MLS of their intention to establish an IDX site and must make their site directly accessible to the MLS for purposes of monitoring/ensuring compliance with applicable rules and policies.

Section 4.

MLS participants may not use IDX-provided listings for any purpose other than display on their websites. This does not require participants to prevent indexing of IDX listings by recognized search engines. (Amended 11/09)

Section 5

Listings or property addresses of sellers who have directed their listing brokers to withhold their listing or property address from display on the Internet (including, but not limited to, publicly-accessible websites or VOWs) shall not be accessible via IDX sites. (Amended 11/09)

Section 6

Listings or property addresses of sellers who have directed their listing brokers to withhold their listing or property address from display on the Internet (including, but not limited to, publicly-accessible websites or VOWs) shall not be accessible via IDX sites. (Amended 11/09)

Section 7

Participants may select the listings they choose to display on their IDX sites based only on objective criteria including, but not limited to, factors such as geography or location (“uptown,” “downtown,” etc.), list price, type of property (e.g., condominiums, cooperatives, single-family detached, multi-family), cooperative compensation offered by listing brokers, type of listing (e.g., exclusive right-to-sell or exclusive agency), or the level of service being provided by the listing firm. Selection of listings displayed on any IDX site must be independently made by each participant. (Amended 11/06)

Section 8

Participants must refresh all MLS downloads and refresh all MLS data at least once every three (3) days. (Amended 11/09)
Section 9

Except as provided in these rules, an IDX site or a participant or user operating an IDX site may not distribute, provide, or make any portion of the MLS database available to any person or entity.

Section 10

When displaying listing content, a participant’s or user’s IDX site must clearly identify the name of the brokerage firm under which they operate in a readily visible color and typeface.

Section 11

Any IDX site that:

a. allows third-parties to write comments or reviews about particular listings or displays a hyperlink to such comments or reviews in immediate conjunction with particular listings, or

b. displays an automated estimate of the market value of the listing (or hyperlink to such estimate) in immediate conjunction with the listing, shall disable or discontinue either or both of those features as to the seller’s listings at the request of the seller. The listing broker or agent shall communicate to the MLS that the seller has elected to have one or both of these features disabled or discontinued on all participants’ websites. Except for the foregoing and subject to Section 18.2.9, a participant’s IDX site may communicate the participant’s professional judgment concerning any listing. Nothing shall prevent an IDX site from notifying its customers that a particular feature has been disabled at the request of the seller. (Adopted 11/09)

Section 12.

Participants shall maintain a means (e.g., e-mail address, telephone number) to receive comments about the accuracy of any data or information that is added by or on behalf of the participant beyond that supplied by the MLS and that relates to a specific property displayed on the IDX site. Participants shall correct or remove any false data or information relating to a specific property upon receipt of a communication from the listing broker or listing agent for the property explaining why the data or information is false. However, participants shall not be obligated to remove or correct any data or information that simply reflects good faith opinion, advice, or professional judgment. (Adopted 11/09)

Section 13. Display of IDX Information by Real Estate Franchise Organizations

Participants may provide IDX information to their respective real estate franchise organizations (“franchisors”) to be indexed for display on such franchisors’ websites, subject to the following requirements and limitations. Failure of a franchisor to comply with the following requirements and limitations can, at the discretion of the MLS, result in suspension or termination of the participant’s(s’) authority to provide IDX information to the franchisor.

a. Initial search results that provide minimal information (e.g., “thumbnails”) are exempt from MLS required disclosures (e.g., listing firm, listing agent, source of information, notice that information is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed accurate) provided that a direct link to a detailed (“full view”) display that includes all required disclosures is provided.

b. Consumers can link directly to a detailed (“full view”) display that complies with disclosure/display rules of the source MLS.

c. IDX information cannot be used for any unauthorized purpose.

d. Inaccurate or incomplete information related to any listing must be promptly corrected by the franchisor at the request of the source MLS.

e. No advertising may appear on pages displaying IDX information.

f. IDX listing information cannot be modified, manipulated, or permanently retained.

Note: For purposes of this policy, “real estate franchisor” is defined as a company granting real estate brokerage franchises under the franchisor’s trademarks pursuant to a franchise disclosure document meeting applicable Federal Trade Commission rules. (Adopted 11/10)

Section 14. Display

Display of listing information pursuant to IDX is subject to the following rules:

(a) Listings displayed pursuant to IDX shall contain only those fields of data designated by the MLS. Display of all other fields (as determined by the MLS) is prohibited. Confidential fields intended only for other MLS participants and users (e.g., cooperative compensation offers, showing instructions, property security information, etc.) may not be displayed on IDX sites.

(b) The type of listing agreement (e.g., exclusive right to sell, exclusive agency, etc.) may not be displayed on IDX sites.

(c) Participants shall not modify or manipulate information relating to other participants’ listings. (This is not a limitation on site design but refers to changes to actual listing data.) MLS data may be augmented with additional data not otherwise prohibited from display so long as the source of the additional data is clearly identified. This requirement does not restrict the format of MLS data display or display of fewer than all of the available listings or fewer authorized data fields.

(d) All listings displayed pursuant to IDX shall identify the listing firm in a reasonably prominent location and in a readily visible color and typeface not smaller than the median used in the display of listing data. (Amended 11/09)

(e) All listings displayed pursuant to IDX shall identify the listing agent.

(f) Non-principal brokers and sales licensees affiliated with IDX participants may display information available through IDX on their own websites subject to their participant’s consent and control and the requirements of state law and/or regulation.

(g) All listings displayed pursuant to IDX shall show the MLS as the source of the information.

(h) Participants (and their affiliated licensees, if applicable) shall indicate on their websites that IDX information is provided exclusively for consumers’ personal, non-commercial use, that it may not be used for any purpose other than to identify prospective properties consumers may be interested in purchasing, and that the data is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed accurate by the MLS. The MLS may, at its discretion, require use of other disclaimers as necessary to protect participants and/or the MLS from liability.

(i) The right to display other participants’ listings pursuant to IDX shall be limited to a participant’s office(s) holding participatory rights in this MLS.

(j) Listings obtained through IDX must be displayed separately from listings obtained from other sources, including information provided by other MLSs. Listings obtained from other sources (e.g., from other MLSs, from non-participating brokers, etc.) must display the source from which each such listing was obtained.

(k) Display of expired, withdrawn, pending, and sold listings is prohibited. (Amended 11/09)

(l) Display of seller’s(s’) and/or occupant’s(s’) name(s), phone number(s), and e-mail address(es) is prohibited.
Section 15. Service and Fees
Service fees and charges for participation in IDX shall be as established annually by the Board of Directors. (Adopted 11/01, Amended 5/05)

Section 16. Virtual Office Websites

Section 16.1

(a) A Virtual Office Website (“VOW”) is a Participant’s Internet website, or a feature of a Participant’s website, through which the Participant is capable of providing real estate brokerage services to consumers with whom the Participant has first established a broker-consumer relationship (as defined by state law) where the consumer has the opportunity to search MLS Listing Information, subject to the Participant’s oversight, supervision, and accountability. A non-principal broker or sales licensee affiliated with a Participant may, with his or her Participant’s consent, operate a VOW. Any VOW of a non-principal broker or sales