Upstream Listing Management Tool to Simplify MLS Integration

May 16, 2017

Brokers using the new Upstream data management tool have the option to enter listing data through either Upstream or their MLS.

That's the gist of an announcement made Tuesday at the REALTORS® Legislative Meetings & Trade Expo in Washington, D.C., by UpstreamRE, a data management company formed by a group of brokers and franchises to give brokerages greater control over how their listing data is used and shared online. Brokers at the meetings saw a live demonstration of the system.

Upstream was originally conceived and developed to enable brokers to enter their listing data in one place and easily set how it's shared with others, including the MLS, their own agents' websites, and third-party portals. A working system, which has been developed for Upstream by the NAR-owned REALTORS® Property Resource, is currently being beta-tested by MLSs and brokers. Using that system, MLSs integrate with Upstream via an API, a program that automatically pulls data from the Upstream database.

With today's announcement, brokers will have a choice of entry location; they can choose to continue entering data in the MLS first, leveraging its add/edit functionality, and allow Upstream to receive those listings from the MLS. Participants can then use Upstream to enhance their listings by adding high-resolution photos, for example, and to manage distribution.

"Our objective has always been to solve problems through partnerships," said Alex Lange, president and CEO of UpstreamRE. "Brokers can continue to leverage their current workflow while gaining all the enhancement and management features of Upstream. Our MLS Advisory Group has been instrumental in determining easier ways for the MLS community to engage and integrate with us."

The National Association of REALTORS® called the announcement of the two-way method an important milestone in the development of Upstream. "Upstream has harnessed the technology necessary to make this a reality as we shape the future of real estate," NAR CEO Dale Stinton said in a statement. "This next inclusive step ensures that our members remain at the center of the real estate transaction."

NAR will continue to provide resources and funding through 2018 via REALTORS® Property Resource, which developed the technology for Upstream.

—Stacey Moncrieff, REALTOR® Magazine