President’s Page: Off-MLS Policy Update

I just returned from the National Association of REALTORS (NAR) Conference and Expo in San Francisco, CA with President-Elect Barry Taylor and Christine Windle, CEO representing the association.

During the conference, the NAR MLS Committee (view for more info) and NAR Board of Directors overwhelmingly approved a Clear Cooperation Policy requiring listing brokers to submit a listing within 1 business day of marketing to the public (view for more info). As you know, on Tuesday, October 16th, Bright MLS had already announced a similar policy with a delayed enactment date of December 1st before fines are imposed (view for more info).

In response to the level of feedback received from members and in an attempt to offer a solution-oriented option, DAAR wrote a letter to the Bright MLS Board of Directors on Friday, October 25th requesting a delayed enactment date on fines until January 1st, 2020 and consideration of implementing a “Private Agent-only Network (PAN)” status within Bright MLS, to strike a balance between the needs of agents, clients and the marketplace.  Modeled after the Midwest Real Estate Data (MRED)’s private listing network, or PLN (view PLN Overview and FAQs), the Bright MLS PAN status would promote cooperation and compensation among all participants while still allowing participants to pre‐market their listings in the best interests of their listing clients.

On Monday, November 11th, Bright MLS responded back to the DAAR Board of Directors that while they will not delay the enactment of fines, they are incorporating substantial flexibility and a spirit of cooperation. The intention of the penalty is to not impact practitioners who have made an honest mistake or are victims of circumstance.   In fact, when fines begin, the first communication will be a warning sent with an explanation of the policy and an opportunity provided to enter the listing quickly before any fines are assessed. In addition, Bright MLS has an active and forgiving appeal process, which will be particularly forgiving during the initial several months following the penalty going active.

Regarding the PAN proposal, Bright MLS indicated that they will further investigate how the marketplace would respond to a PAN.  In fact, Bright MLS is currently is reviewing several policy considerations and can explore a potential PAN option in the future.

The DAAR Board of Directors will monitor and communicate with Bright MLS as they further explore this proposal.  In the meantime, we will continue to provide you with information and resources to help keep you in compliance with this new policy.  Please take time to review the latest resources, including updated questions and answers, regarding this new policy here.

Thank you for your continued membership and support of the Dulles Area Association of REALTORS®. Our number one priority is you as we work to advocate on your behalf.

Please reach out to me at or Christine Windle, CEO,, 571-291-9803 if you have any questions.  Thank you.