The Listing Process and Clear Cooperation

  1. Once you have a signed exclusive listing agreement, it must be entered into Realtracs within forty-eight (48) hours with, at a minimum, an Incomplete status.
  2. Clear Cooperation mandates that when you publicly market an Incomplete listing, the listing must be modified as Coming Soon/Hold or Active within one (1)business day.
    • Public Marketing includes yard signs, all social media, IDX/VOW display, email or text blasts, public website display, flyers, and general showings.
    • Public marketing does not include word of mouth communication about a listing.
  3. If you show the listing while it is in an Incomplete status, it must be modified as Active in Realtracs within one (1) business day.
  4. If your sellers have legitimate privacy concerns and refuse to disseminate the listing to other Participants, you have an Exempt Listing.  Learn more about Exempt Listings here.

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Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

Q:  Can I advertise my listing while in Coming Soon?

Yes.  Many public marketing methods are permitted, such as yard signs, social media posts, email, and flyers. SHOWINGS, INCLUDING VIRTUAL AND THOSE BY THE LISTING AGENT, ARE NOT PERMITTED WHILE IN COMING SOON.  Only listings in an active status can be shown to prospective buyers.

 

Q:  Can I move a listing from Coming Soon to Active or Under Contract-Showing, and then back to Coming Soon?

Not within five days.  Doing so will result in a fine. (see Realtracs Rules, Exhibit B, Infraction 6).

 

Q:  Can a buyer make a "sight unseen' offer on a Coming Soon listing without seeing the property?

Of course.  A sight-unseen offer is not uncommon, especially in multi-offer or competitive situations. However, showings are not permitted while in Coming Soon status.


Q:  How does this affect new construction?

Clear Cooperation was implemented primarily to address concerns with listings available for sale with exclusive listing contracts that are required to be listed in the MLS. Some property types are excluded from this, including new construction with multiple properties under a blanket listing agreement.

 

Q:  What if a listing is moved immediately from Incomplete to an Under Contract – Not Showing status?

Whether this is a violation or not depends on the circumstances around the listing agreement. There are many situations (especially in this seller’s market) where a listing goes under contract immediately.  The crux of the question and discovery would surround the order of events:  Was a listing agreement signed and publicly advertised BEFORE it was submitted to MLS?  Was it under contract within the 48-hour submission timeframe? Conversely, was a buyer identified and contracted with before the listing agreement being signed or within the 48-hour timeframe?

 

Q:  Can you respond to someone who posted about a buyer's need if you plan to have a listing signed next week?

Yes.  Because there has not been a listing agreement signed yet, Clear Cooperation is not in effect.


Q:  What is defined as public marketing?

    The easiest way to define public marketing is to share Realtracs rule 1.14:

 

1.15 Public Marketing. 

Marketing a listing through flyers displayed in windows, yard signs, digital marketing on public-facing websites, brokerage website displays (including IDX and VOW), general showings, broker and public open houses, digital marketing such as email campaigns and social media applications, and other similar marketing and advertising activities.


Some examples of Public Marketing include but are not limited to: any Facebook post, message, or group, whether public or private; Tweets; any Instagram post or message; any multi-brokerage listing sharing networks, regardless of the delivery platform; group or shared texts of any kind; group or shared emails; and, other similar social-sharing, marketing, or advertising networks.  Read more about public Marketing here.

 

Q:  understand that I cannot advertise an Incomplete Listing to the public.  Are other agents and brokers outside of my company considered the public as well?

Yes.  Any individual or group of individuals outside of your brokerage, including an agent, broker, or brokerage staff, is considered the public to enforce advertising Incomplete listings.  In-person word of mouth marketing agent to agent is always permitted.


Q:  How do you report a violation?

Violations can be reported to data@realtracs.com. The email should include the property address, the listing agent and office, and why it is believed there was a listing being withheld from MLS that was publicly advertised.

 

Q:  Can I advertise before I have a listing agreement?

No. Advertising a listing without a valid listing agreement violates the Tennessee Real Estate Commission’s advertising rules.

 

Q:  Can I show my home in Coming Soon status?

No.  However, Public Marketing (other than showings) is permitted while a listing is Coming Soon. Please note, the prohibition of showings in Coming Soon also includes users in the same brokerage as the listing agent.


Q:  When am I required to enter a listing into the MLS?

Listings are required to be entered within 48 hours of the date shown on your signed listing agreement.  

 

Q:  Can I still market my listing in Coming Soon groups?

You are free to do whatever business practice works for you.  However, as a condition of membership with Realtracs, if you have an executed listing agreement and are marketing the property online or in digital “coming soon groups" or "breakfast clubs," it must be submitted to MLS in a Coming Soon or Active status.


Rule Changes for Clear Cooperation

Define Public Marketing

1.14 Public Marketing. Marketing a listing through flyers displayed in windows, yard signs, digital marketing on public-facing websites, brokerage website displays (including IDX and VOW), general showings, broker and public open houses, digital marketing such as email campaigns and social media applications, and other similar marketing and advertising activities.

Modify Section 2.2 Clear Cooperation

Within one (1) business day of any Public Marketing, a listing must be made available for cooperation with other MLS Participants by designating the listing status as Coming Soon/Hold or Active.

  1. Exclusive listing information for required property types must be filed and distributed to other MLS Participants for cooperation under the Clear Cooperation Policy. This applies to listings filed under Section 2.1 and listings exempt from distribution under Section 2.9, and any other situation where the listing Participant is Publicly Marketing an exclusive listing that is required to be filed with the service and is not currently available to other MLS Participants.
  2. Showings are considered Public Marketing and, once a listing is shown, it must be submitted in accordance with this Section 2.2 and may not be entered with a status of Coming Soon/Hold. The exception to this rule is when an Exempt Listing is shown, on a one-to-one basis, to prospective buyers in a manner that protects the Seller’s privacy concerns.
  3. New Construction developments with multiple properties where a Participant has a blanket listing agreement with the seller are not subject to Section 2.2.

Modified Section 2.10 Coming Soon/Hold; New Construction

  1. When a property is submitted as Coming Soon/Hold, (i) all showings are prohibited, including showings by listing agent or agents from listing agent's firm; (ii) Public Marketing (except for showings) is permitted.  A listing entered as Coming Soon/Hold may not be changed to Active or Under Contract/Showing status and changed back to Coming Soon/Hold within a five day period.
  2. All New Construction must be entered into MLS as Active, Coming Soon/Hold, or Under Contract designated as a “presale” prior to the completion of the framing stage of construction. A rendering or photograph of a model home may be used until the façade is complete.

Modified fines in Exhibit B: Infraction & Fine Schedule, Listing Agent $250, $500, and $1,000 section

Violations in excess of three occurrences may result in suspension or cancelation of service at the Board of Directors' discretion.

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