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Across the nation, broker marketplaces known as Multiple Listing Services (MLS) connect buyers and sellers of real estate through their respective agents.

Locally this marketplace is the Vail Multi-List Service or VMLS. The VMLS provides real property information for most of Eagle County, including all the towns and neighborhoods along the I-70 corridor from East Vail to Dotsero and into Northern Eagle County.

In a world without the MLS, there wouldn't be a centralized, reliable source for available real estate.  Working with a Realtor® with MLS access provides numerous benefits to buyers and sellers.

"Through the MLS, Realtors have real-time information that can help a buyer/seller make more informed decisions when making an offer or pricing a home to sell," says Vail Multi-List Service Chair Kira Taylor. "Benefits range from valuable market insights and data - to Realtor access to the latest technology and training programs."

MLS access enables Realtors® to interpret the market data. For example, a Realtor® gives sellers the most accurate pricing analysis by using MLS market data from their town or neighborhood. Buyers benefit by having access to a larger pool of MLS-listed homes within their preferred budget or specifications.

According to a survey by marketing research firm 1000watt Inside, over 62 percent of recent home sellers listed the MLS as the most valuable marketing tactic. The next closest tactic, professional photography or video, came in at 39 percent.

Providing a Fair Market

Realtors® are members of the most prominent advocate for homeowner rights - the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR).

NAR works with MLSs around the country, like the VMLS, to ensure that guidelines allow for affordability and accessibility to enable all Americans to achieve the dream of home ownership.

The MLS system creates a 'level playing field' in the real estate market by compiling the housing market information in one place.  A Realtor® who is an independent agent with a one-person office has the same access as a Realtor® with a large multi-office brokerage.

Also, local broker marketplaces that Realtors® and real estate agents feed into are a critical fair housing tool because they make the majority of inventory in a particular market available to all people regardless of race, income, or other backgrounds.

Accuracy is the Key

The VMLS connects to third-party sites, like and – an added benefit to sellers who have listed a property. It's entertaining to search these third-party sites to see what's on the Vail area market, but the most accurate data comes from the VMLS and Realtors®.

According to Taylor, the accuracy of data for listings is a priority. The VMLS operates in real-time, meaning any pricing or property status changes must be updated as soon as possible. Realtors® have strict guidelines on timeliness and accuracy that must be followed to comply.

"The VMLS also keeps its members up-to-speed with new regulations that may be required by the National Association of Realtors or Colorado Division of Real Estate," adds Taylor.

On a local level, the rules and regulations for VMLS usage are affected by Realtor® and appraiser members who regularly use the system. Several of these members volunteer their time to review policies as part of an operations committee. Any rule changes are designed to protect competition – including members and clients - and reflect NAR regulations and market trends.

The Tools to Succeed

The VBR prides itself on providing tools and resources to help its licensed members position themselves as professionals that the community can rely on for real estate. It also uses technology to make the process of buying and selling real estate more efficient.

One such tool, called FloPlan, allows Realtors® to create floor plans by scanning property layouts on a mobile phone. Using FloPlan in conjunction with photos allows buyers to see a better representation of the listing, and sellers attract serious buyers by showing the properties' layout. Another tool called ShowingTime allows sellers to block off times that aren't convenient for showings, like while having guests or renters on the property.

Coming soon is an automated compliance tool that will alert agents of potential violations or errors in real time as they are entering a new listing. Ongoing MLS training is provided with recorded videos, live webinars, and in-person classes, and all new members complete an orientation to learn how to best use the system.

"The major goals for the VMLS include improving its technology and data capabilities," says Taylor. "And providing even greater value to its members and the clients we serve."


Visit to find a Realtor® who is an Eagle County real estate market expert.