We Don’t Own the Data
Arizona Regional Multiple Listing Service made a recent change to their policies and their data. There were, on the records, about 4750 active listings that had been entered with a checked field. That field was labeled Lender/Corp Approval which was thought by many to be the best option when entering a short sale into the system. Seems logical to me.
If a property is being listed at an asking price less than what the owner owes on the mortgage, the bank needs to approve any future offers prior to closing escrow.
Now, there is a field that is designed specifically for Short Sale Approvals, and the field that was previously Lender/Corp Approval has been changed to Relo/Corp Approval for corporate relocations. This is a good thing.
I’m not a big fan of calling a listing a short sale unless the bank has pre-approved a sale price that is short of what is owed on the note. After all, a sale is a sale, and a listing is a listing, and if it’s being sold for less and the bank hasn’t approved, it should be property marked and stated that short sale approval is required.
Regarding the recent change, there are probably going to be some problems with the unexpected data modifications. ARMLS has opted to sweep the records to change all listings that weren’t Relocation/Corporate Approval Required so that they weren’t using that field. They updated the listings to show the Short Sale Approval Required field to be marked. In some cases where this is incorrect, you’ll need to ask your Realtor if they have checked into this. Of course, if they’re on top of things, they’ll be calling you to explain what has happened :). This outlines another internet issue that we all have to face, and that’s that the data we enter into ARMLS isn’t our data, so they can do whatever they want with it. Granted, an uprising would be few and far between, albeit possible, but I don’t think that ARMLS is going to do anything to hurt their relationships with the techy geeky data guys like myself. I’m fine with positive changes that have slightly adverse short term effects. Bring’em on.