MLS rival launched by real estate companies | Money | #Toronto #realestate

MLS rival launched by real estate companies

Five real-estate companies have launched what they claim is Canada’s largest commission-free sales network, mounting a challenge to the dominant Multiple Listing Service.

The network was formed after the recent acquisitions of ComFree in Alberta, in Saskatchewan, ComFree in Manitoba and in Ontario by Quebec-based and

The network currently has 12,000 properties listed for sale and expects to double the business every year. Fees for sellers range from between $499 to $699.

Martin Rygiel, general manager for, said the network is likely to be a real contender to the Canadian Real Estate Association’s Multiple Listing Service (MLS), which currently accounts for about 90% of real-estate transactions in the country.

“It would be absurd to think that it would not be,” he said. “From what we know, the public is in desperate need of this kind of service.”

“When it comes down to the costs of trading real estate, it’s the No. 1 concern of clients,” he added.

Rygiel said the average selling price for a house in Toronto is about $330,000, which would generate commissions of as much as $20,000 for real-estate agents.

“It’s a very interesting move and smart strategy to combine five companies,” said John Andrew, director of executive seminars on corporate and investment real estate at Queen’s University. “They are the first to do this on anything, but a very local scale, and I’d be willing to predict they’ll do very well.”

The majority of properties in Canada are still sold through the Canadian Real Estate Association’s Multiple Listing Service.

The association has come under pressure from the Competition Bureau, which has raised concerns rules imposed on agents are anti-competitive.

The system keeps key sales information – including newly listed properties, past selling prices and neighbourhood comparisons – hidden from non-members.

Critics have also said it forces sellers to pay for services from real-estate agents that they don’t want or need.

Andrew said the arrival of networks such as is likely to help the Competition Bureau to achieve its aims.

“I’d bet there will be an explosion in agents allowing clients to pick from a menu of services,” he said.

Rygiel said the five companies combined have so far sold more than 85,000 properties, saving customers more than $1 billion in commissions.

The network is designed to be a one-stop shop for consumers, who can list their properties through the system, but also gain access to expert advice on things like how to showcase their properties and prepare legal documents.

“The client is assisted throughout the entire process,” he said. “We provide a service that is revolutionary across the board, as the traditional industry isn’t efficient any more.”



About Tariq Sultan
Dear Readers, I am a dedicated Toronto, Ontario based real estate professional who has been successfully meeting and exceeding the needs of his clients for past several years. I am actively involved in the insurance, financing, and mortgage industry. Real estate is not only my career – it is my passion. I strive to continuously provide my clients with exceptional service to ensure they are fully satisfied when it comes to their real estate needs. For any real estate related inquires contact me today, I will be happy to assist you. Best wishes, Tariq Sultan

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