So, it seems the buzz word in real estate right now seems to be IDX. With all the acronyms and abbreviations in technology and information systems these days, you might be left scratching your head. We dont blame you.
To sum it up, IDX stands for Internet Data Display, and, according to Realtor.org, it is a policy that allows brokers to exchange consent to display one anothers property listings on the Internet. However, the National Association of Realtors points out that you may know it by another name: Internet Data Display or Broker Reciprocity.
This is obviously a great marketing tool for real estate agents because it exponentially grows the reach of their listings. This includes both other real estate agents sites (like our Andrew Mitchell Real Estate property search), but also other property search sites like Realtor.com, Trulia, Zillow, Yahoo! Real Estate
While many MLS systems were doing this for years, in 2002 NAR mandated that all MLS systems must offer their participants a way to display the listings of others on their own websites. What makes this news 9 years later is the technological capabilities that increase this reach and blur the lines with quick and easy access to information in a variety of ways. Below are some frequently asked questions and answers provided by the National Association of Realtors:
Q. How is Internet Data Exchange accomplished?
A. Other brokers' listings can be displayed either by downloading data from the MLS compilation and publishing it on your Web site or by framing the MLS's publicly accessible Web site (if such a site exists).
Q. Do I have to allow other Participants to display my listings on their Web sites?
A. No, Participants are free to withhold authority for such display - either on a blanket or on a listing-by-listing basis.
Q. What happens if I won't allow other Participants to display my listings on their Web sites?
A. If you prohibit the display of your listings by other Participants, you may not display their listings on your Web site pursuant to the IDX program. Other Participants may give you permission to display their listings but that permission would have to be sought and obtained separately from each Participant.
Q. Can I authorize some, but not all, Participants to display my listings on the Internet?
A. If you consent to the display of your listings by other Participants under the IDX program, then any other Participant in the MLS may display your listings. If you prefer to authorize some, but not all, Participants to display your listings, this can be accomplished - though not under the IDX program. Separate consents would have to be granted to each Participant authorized to display your listings. As noted in an earlier question, MLSs may, but are not required, to transmit your listings to any destination you authorize. The decisions as to whether an MLS will provide such a service, and the related charges (if any) are matters to be determined locally.
Q. Does IDX mean that confidential information will now be available to the public?
A. No. IDX permits MLSs to prohibit display (by either downloading or by framing) of information intended exclusively for other real estate professionals and not for consumers.
Q. Can listing information be modified when it is displayed on other Participants' Web sites?
A. This, too, is a matter of local determination, although any authorized modification must comply with the "true picture" mandate of Article 12 of the Code of Ethics.
Q. Does IDX conflict with license law or the Code of Ethics?
A. Implementation of IDX must be consistent with state law. NAR's IDX policy statement is consistent with the Code of Ethics since no display of other Participants' listings can occur without their consent. Consent, though, can be assumed unless affirmatively withheld by the listing Participant.
Q. Why should we let our listings be displayed on our competitors' Web site?
A. Letting other Participants display listings on the Internet is a business decision each Participant must make, taking into account their duty to promote the best interests of their clients; to cooperate with other REALTORS; and the opportunity to use the Internet to better serve their clients and customers.
For a complete list of NARs FAQ, visit the link on our Facebook Page.