Policies

Membership

Processing Membership Applications
Processing NJMLS Membership Applications cannot be completed until a signed application is faxed to NJMLS Membership Department and confirmation is received from the appropriate Real Estate Board that the applicant is a member in good standing.

New Members
New Members are required to attend an Orientation class to review NJMLS Rules & Regulations and our XL Paragon MLS system. Passwords, DisplayKEYs, and eKEYs will not be issued until new members attend this mandatory class.

Transferring Offices
In order to transfer a member from one office to another, written confirmation is required from both the old office and the new office. The Agent Transfer/Delete Form should be sent to the NJMLS Membership Department.

Security of Passwords, DisplayKEYs, and eKEYs
Passwords, DisplayKEYs, and eKEYs cannot be used by anyone other than the assigned Member. Giving out your password, DisplayKEY, or eKEY is a violation of the NJMLS Rules & Regulations and is a fineable offense.

Listings

Required Signatures
Listing Agreements, Change of Status Forms, and Withdrawal Forms are not valid unless they are signed by all owners and the listing broker. Until all signatures are secured, the listing or change should not be entered into the MLS. In addition, please write the MLS number on forms before faxing to the NJMLS.

Members Only
If an agent is not an NJMLS member, their name and contact information cannot be included in listings. To avoid a fine, make sure you reference NJMLS members only in the Showing Instructions/Agent Remarks section of listings.

Showing Instructions
Information that should be viewed by agents only and not appear in Customer Reports MUST BE ENTERED IN AGENT REMARKS/SHOWING INSTRUCTIONS and not in the general Remarks section. This includes selling bonus information, all negotiations through LB, open house information, property address, contact information including agent names, office names, phone and fax numbers, e-mail and website addresses, etc.

Accurate Information
Listings must reflect current Property Taxes and accurate Flood Zone disclosure. It is the listing agent’s responsibility to ensure that this information is accurate on his or her listings. Please review your inventory today and update this information.

Listing Photos
NJMLS rules require that listing content be complete, including a photo on all residential sale and rental listings. When entering a listing, if you select NO in the Take Photo field, you must upload your own photo within seven days. A message is included to remind you to do so. If the photo is not uploaded within seven days, a fine will be issued.

Listing Photo Captions
Addresses and contact information should not be included in the captions that appear under listing photos or in virtual tours. Since photos and captions appear on reports, the presence of addresses and contact information would defeat the purpose of the “Customer Report Without Address” that members use to send to their customers.

Watermarking/Copyrighting Photos
Although no notice is legally required for a photo to be copyrighted, if a copyright owner wants legal protection under copyright infringement laws the owner must register the work at the copyright office. Registration gives some litigation and damages benefits.

Offices choosing to watermark their photos must standardize the watermark on images uploaded to the NJMLS system. The watermark must include the copyright symbol (if the photo is registered), followed by the owner’s initials (owner of the photo) and the year the photo was taken. Watermark must not be more prominent than the NJMLS watermark.

For example, “Jones Realty” would watermark a copyrighted photo taken in 2010 as follows:
© JR, 2010

Exceptions
If there are exceptions to a listing, this must be disclosed by selecting Yes in the Exceptions field of the listing. Remarks must indicate how many exceptions there are and the duration of these exceptions. A letter must be faxed to the NJMLS which states the names and durations of these exceptions.

Exclusive Agency
This means that the seller gives the listing broker the right to sell the property for a specified period, yet at the same time reserves the right to sell the property himself without paying a commission to the listing broker. You MUST select Yes in the Exclusive Agency field of the listing if an Exclusive Agency agreement exists.

Dual Commission Arrangement
This means that the commission paid by the seller is variable and dependent on who brings in the buyer. For example, if the seller sells the property through his own efforts, he may pay a lesser commission to the listing broker. Another example would be a listing in which the commission offered by the seller may be less should the property be sold by the listing broker, and higher if the listing is sold by a cooperating broker. You MUST enter Yes in the Dual Commission Arrangement field of your listing if a Dual Commission Arrangement agreement exists.

Unpublished Owner Name
If both the owner name and owner phone number are going to be left out of the listing, a letter must be sent to NJMLS, signed by the seller, stating the seller does not wish to publish their name and number in the NJMLS.

Unpublished Buyer Name

If the buyer does not want their name published through the NJMLS, the listing office must send something in writing stating the buyer does not want their name and number published through the NJMLS. This letter can be drawn up by the listing office, and would not need to be signed by the buyer.

More Than One Category
Listing a property in more than one category to increase exposure is allowed as long as one of those categories is the category for which the property is deeded. For example, a legal 2-family property must be entered into the 2-4 Family listing category and optionally, it can be entered into the Residential category. Note: If a property is listed in more than one category, each listing must reference the other(s) in the Remarks or Showing Instructions.

Short Sales
Per NJMLS Rules and Regulations, Listing Brokers/Agents are required to disclose the potential for a short sale in the REMARKS section of a listing. Suggested language to use is “Potential short sale, subject to lender/bank approval.”
“Participants must disclose potential short sales when reasonably known to the listing participants. A short sale is defined as “a transaction where title transfers, where the sale price is insufficient to pay the total of all liens and costs of sale and where the seller does not bring sufficient liquid assets to the closing to cure all deficiencies.”
In addition, Listing Brokers/Agents must update ALL statuses on a Short Sale: ARIP when an offer is signed by buyer and seller and being reviewed by the attorneys/bank or lender – do not wait for bank approval to report the ARIP status; UC once the Attorney Review has been completed; and SOLD after closing. Listings not reported as ARIP or UC within 24 hours, or SOLD within 7 days of closing, are subject to a fine.

Seller’s Disclosure and Lead Paint Disclosure
New fields have been added to the Residential, 2-4 Family and CCT Categories. They are Seller’s Disclosure Y/N and Lead Paint Disclosure Y/N. While inputting a listing, or modifying an existing listing, you must now indicate whether or not a disclosure is on file for the listing. These documents do not need to be faxed to the NJMLS, however, we strongly encourage you to utilize the Manage Associated Documents feature already in Listing Maintenance to easily attach these documents to the listing in XL Paragon.

Open Houses
Open house information entered into NJMLS listings must include a specific beginning and ending time. During this time, the property must be open for viewing. Open houses by appointment are not permitted.

Showings, Keyboxes & Keypads

Return Keys to Keybox Immediately After Showing
NJMLS Rules and Regulations state: It is the obligation of the Member/Subscriber when showing a property to return the owner’s key to the keybox immediately after the showing. This rule must be observed as a safety precaution and a courtesy to the owner as well as other members.

DisplayKEYs & eKEYs
NJMLS Rules and Regulations state: DisplayKEYs and eKEYs are only to be used by the leaseholder and cannot be shared with or transferred to another member.
“Unauthorized use of a keypad is a violation of the lease agreement and the authorized key holder must bring the key to the NJMLS within twenty four (24) hours and have the authorized code changed. Keypad will be turned off after twenty four (24) hours. The cost for the reprogramming of the code is eighty (80) dollars.”

Delayed Showings
If a listing cannot be shown when it is first listed, showing instructions must specify the date when showings can begin. The listing office cannot show the property during this time period.

No Showings Until Further Notice
Properties which have been on the market and then cannot be shown must be Withdrawn Temporarily. While the listing is Withdrawn Temporarily, no one can show the property, including the listing office. This is also indicated on the Withdrawal Form. Once showings can resume, the property would be put Back on the Market.

Keybox on Property
NJMLS Rules and Regulations state: “If a keybox is used for showings, the Participant must place the latest NJMLS keybox on the property so that all registered members of the Service are able to gain access to the property.” In addition, when accessing a property through a NJMLS keybox, it is your obligation to return the key to the keybox immediately after the showing.

Purchasing Keyboxes
Keyboxes can only be purchased with a broker’s check, or with a broker’s written authorization to bill the office and are registered to the Designated Realtor of the office.

Shackle Codes
Shackle codes can only be given out to the Designated Realtor of the office to which the keybox is registered. NJMLS can provide or modify shackle codes for an agent if the broker has provided written authorization for that agent to receive/modify the shackle codes.

Advertising

Disclaimers
When featuring “Sold” information in advertising or mailings obtained from the NJMLS, the following disclaimer must be included:

“These properties were listed and sold by various Participants of the NJMLS between (date) and (date).”

Please refer to our Rules & Regulations – Section 2.7 entitled “Advertising of Listing Filed with the Service” – for rules on advertising listings.

New Advertising Rule Effective January 1, 2006
When advertising sold listings, you MUST include the listing office’s name and the selling office’s name UNLESS you or your office were involved in EITHER side of the transaction. For more details and sample advertising conforming to the new rule, click here.

Real Estate Commission Policies Regarding Advertising

The New Jersey Real Estate Commission has responded to the proliferation, prominence, and popularity of Internet websites by adjusting their Advertising Rules accordingly. It is important to note the following:

The same rules apply for Internet advertising that apply to traditional advertising, such as the rule that requires the broker’s name to be equal in size and more prominent than the agent’s name. Brokers are still held responsible for approving and authorizing every advertisement. In the event that a real estate professional creates a website to solicit the sale of property, licensees must disclose their status as sales associates or broker-associates on each page that contains a real estate ad, as well as the mane of the affiliated broker.

These same rules apply for ads on services such as Craigslist, Google, and Trulia – licensee status must be identified, as well as affiliated broker, with the broker’s name more prominent than that of the agent.

When a webpage established by a sales associate or broker-associate is not linked electronically to the webpage of the affiliated broker, the page must display the telephone number and may display the street address of the licensed brokerage office. Once again, that information must be as large as the predominant size wording on the page. In the event that a licensee’s webpage is linked to the broker’s website, the page of the non-broker licensee shall display information which clearly indicates how to link to the broker’s site. And in general, any advertising which contains a home telephone number – or cell phone number, home fax, or e-mail address – of a licensee must also include the affiliated broker’s office number.

Proper Use of Bulletin Mail
Bulletin Mail is a service that allows members to communicate new information on listings. Posting the same message repeatedly undermines the effectiveness of Bulletin Mail. Please post a message only when there is new information to share. Messages unrelated to real estate should be placed as Classified.

NJMLS Billing and Refund Policy

Monthly Billing for MLS Services:
Designated Realtors will receive a monthly statement for charges incurred during the previous month.

Payment Process:
Payments on account are due within 30 days of billing. Payments may be mailed or paid online with a credit card.

Late Payments:
Designated Realtor in arrears thirty (30) days or more shall continue to pay dues and other charges until resignation or expulsion, which shall take effect after sixty (60) days default in payment of a charge to the Service. Thereafter, the Designated Realtor will be dropped from membership and in order to return to membership in good standing, said broker must pay the current initiation fee plus the remaining unpaid balance due.

Refund Policy:
All NJMLS fees are non-refundable. If NJMLS erroneously bills a member, a credit will be applied to their account and will appear on the next monthly statement. Terminated Members with a credit balance on their account will receive a refund check within 30 days of termination.

Privacy Policy

In order to operate the NJMLS service, (“NJMLS” or “we”), must ask you to provide us personally identifiable information about yourself. This Privacy Policy describes the personally identifiable information we collect and how we use that personally identifiable information. NJMLS takes the privacy of your personally identifiable information very seriously and will use your personally identifiable information only in accordance with the terms of this Privacy Policy.

Additionally, in order to enhance the protection of your privacy and our compliance with this Privacy Policy, NJMLS has agreed to notify you of:

What personally identifiable information of yours is collected by NJMLS.
How the personally identifiable information is used, and to whom the personally identifiable information may be disclosed.
What choices are available to you regarding collection, use and distribution of the personally identifiable information.
How you can correct any inaccuracies in the personally identifiable information.
If you have questions or concerns regarding this Privacy Policy, you should first contact NJMLS via email, support@njmls.com.

A. INTRODUCTION

Definitions
“Personally identifiable information” is information, that is not otherwise publicly available, which can be used to distinguish or trace your identity, such as your name, phone number, e-mail address, credit card number, etc. alone, or when combined with other personal or identifying information which is linked or linkable to you, such as date and place of birth, mother’s maiden name, etc.

“NJMLS websites” includes all areas (public and private) of NJMLS’ website, www.newjerseymls.com, njmls.com, and all areas of our Membership, MLS and Public Records databases.

A “Cookie” is a small amount of data, often including an anonymous unique identifier, transmitted to your browser from a website, which includes electronic data about you and your computer. “Cookies” are stored on your computer’s hard drive.

Notification of Changes
This policy may be revised over time as new features are added to NJMLS’ products and services, NJMLS websites, or as we incorporate suggestions from you.

We will post the amended Privacy Policy prominently on our website so that you can always review what personally identifiable information we gather, how we might use that personally identifiable information, and whether we will disclose it to anyone.

The NJMLS websites include links to some third party websites. These sites are governed by their own privacy statements, and NJMLS is not responsible for their operations, including but not limited to their information practices. If you submit personally identifiable information to or . through these third party websites, you should review the privacy statement of these sites before providing them with personally identifiable information.

B. INFORMATION WE COLLECT

Listing Data and Images
The nature of NJMLS’ business is the gathering and sharing of data to facilitate real estate transactions between member real estate professionals. When you enter a listing into the MLS system, the content and images associated with that listing become part of the copyrighted MLS listing database compilation. The use of the content and images is governed by NJMLS’ Rules and Regulations. Use the link at the side of the page for a copy of NJMLS’ Rules and Regulations.

Required Information (“Agent Information”)
To become a NJMLS member, you must provide a variety of personally identifiable information, including but not limited to your name, address, phone number and e-mail address.

In order to pay your invoice through NJMLS, you must provide a credit card or debit card. You have the option to allow us to keep that credit card on file in order to facilitate easier electronic payment in the future or for direct debiting purposes.

Optional Information
If you choose to purchase optional products you may be asked to provide additional personally identifiable information about yourself. If you utilize optional features offered from NJMLS, such as E-Cards or flyers in NJMLS’ MLS system, you may submit, at your option, additional personally identifiable information (like personal photos) for optimum use of that service. NJMLS may also collect similar personally identifiable information if you apply for a NJMLS job or enter a NJMLS contest.

Transaction Information
When you use NJMLS to pay your invoice, we ask you to provide information related to each transaction, including the amount of the transaction, the particular invoice you wish to apply payment to, and your e-mail address. We retain this information for each of your transactions through NJMLS. We also collect the Internet address (IP address) of the computer or device you use to access your NJMLS account.

Website Traffic Data

Because of the way that World Wide Web communication standards work, when you arrive at or leave NJMLS websites, we automatically receive the web address of the site that you came from or are going to. We also collect statistics on which pages of our website you visit while you are on NJMLS’ websites, the type of browser you use and the times you access our websites. We use this data only to try to understand your preferences better and to manage the load on our servers, so as to improve our service and your experience with NJMLS.

Our Use of “Cookies”
“Cookies” are small files of data that we send to your computer to allow us to recognize you as a NJMLS customer if you return a NJMLS site using the same computer and browser. We send a “session cookie” to your computer when you log in to NJMLS by entering your username and password. These cookies allow us to recognize you if you visit our various sites during the same session, so that you don’t need to re-enter your password multiple times. They also track the functions you performed while on our site. Once you log out or close your browser, these session cookies expire and no longer have any effect.

Help Desk Correspondence
If you send us correspondence, including e-mails and faxes, we may retain such correspondence in the records of your account. We may also retain Help Desk correspondence and other correspondence from NJMLS to you. We may retain some of these records in order to measure and improve our member service, and to investigate violations of our Rules and Regulations. We may, over time, delete these records.

Questionnaires and Surveys
From time to time, we may offer optional questionnaires and surveys to you for such purposes as collecting demographic statistics or assessing your interests and needs. The use of the data collected will be explained in detail in the survey itself. If we collect personally identifiable information from our members in these questionnaires and surveys, the members will be given notice of how the personally identifiable information will be used prior to their participation in the survey or questionnaire.

Non-member (REALTOR® to customer) Personally Identifiable Information and Communications
You have the option to create customer and/or client contact information in the MLS system, which by its nature contains personally identifiable information on an individual who is not a NJMLS member. NJMLS will not use customer/client personally identifiable information or disclose that personally identifiable information to third parties.

When you send an e-mail through NJMLS’ MLS system to a customer or client, we retain a copy of that e-mail, including, for example, the recipient’s name and e-mail address. We do this so you can see a complete record of your communications. Although this personally identifiable information is stored, we will not market to the non-member in any way at any time. NJMLS will not disclose any customer or client personally identifiable information to third parties.

When you send an e-mail through NJMLS’ MLS system to a customer or client, that customer or client must choose to subscribe or unsubscribe from receiving e-mails from you. NJMLS will not share the customer’s or client’s choice to subscribe or unsubscribe with any NJMLS member, other than the member who initiated the request. NJMLS does, however, reserve the right to share all customers’ subscription choices with any ISP (AOL, MSN, Yahoo!, etc.) if necessary to establish the legitimacy of NJMLS’ MLS e-mail.

C. OUR USE AND DISCLOSURE OF PERSONALLY IDENTIFIABLE INFORMATION

Listing Data and Images
When you enter a listing into the MLS system, the content and images associated with that listing become part of the copyrighted MLS listing database compilation. Ownership of NJMLS’ MLS database compilation and each NJMLS member’s “fair use” thereof is governed by NJMLS’ Rules and Regulations. Use the link at the side of the page for a copy of NJMLS’ Rules and Regulations.

The property owner personally identifiable information included in a listing is not used by NJMLS or disclosed to any third party.

Internal Uses
We use the personally identifiable information we collect about you in order 1) to provide our services and process your transactions, 2) to provide member service, 3) to determine your eligibility to receive offers for special features, products, and personally tailored communications and 4) to improve our products, services, and security.

We give access to personally identifiable information about you to those employees who we believe reasonably need to come into contact with that personally identifiable information to provide products or services to you, or in order to do their jobs, such as fulfill customer service requests. We require our employees to protect the privacy of personally identifiable information about our members.

Disclosure to Other Licensees
If you are a registered NJMLS member, your name, office, office address and office phone/fax number are displayed to others when they perform a Member or Office Directory search using NJMLS data. If you are a Broker/Owner, you may have access to additional personally identifiable information for each agent in your office such as their individual NJMLS account information: fees paid, owed, etc.

Disclosure of Financial Data
Your credit card number, bank account, and other financial personally identifiable information will only be revealed to the extent necessary to process your transactions, unless we are required to disclose such personally identifiable information pursuant to a validly issued subpoena or other form of legal process.

Disclosure to Third Parties
NJMLS will not disclose any of your personally identifiable information to third parties except in the limited circumstances described below, or unless you provide your express permission. These third parties are limited by law or by contract from using the personally identifiable information for secondary purposes beyond the purposes for which the personally . identifiable information is shared.

We may disclose the personally identifiable information we collect, as described above, to companies that perform marketing services on our behalf. These companies are subject to confidentiality agreements with us as well as other legal restrictions that prohibit them from using the personally identifiable information except to market the specified NJMLS-related products or services, unless you have affirmatively agreed or given your prior permission for other uses.

We also disclose personally identifiable information to our REALTOR® Associations. This is done in order to verify your application and your standing in the Association, which may directly affect your type of NJMLS membership. These Associations may use this personally identifiable information to market other products and services which may be of interest to you.

We license content related to the advertisement and showing of properties on www.REALTOR.com and other publicly viewed websites. We also license this content to vendors of Internet Data Exchange and Virtual Office websites, and to other vendors that assist you in facilitating the real estate transaction. Additionally, we provide listing content to other Multiple Listing Services through comprehensive data sharing agreements. This content may include some personally identifiable information on the listing agent and/or selling agent, such as their name, office phone number and agent photo.

In order to deliver certain services to members, our service providers may have access to your personally identifiable information for use for a limited time in connection with these business activities to ensure optimum use of the service. Where we utilize third parties for the processing of any personally identifiable information, we implement reasonable contractual and technical protections limiting the use of that information to the NJMLS-specified purposes.

We share aggregated statistical data with our business partners or for public relations. For example, we may disclose that a specific percentage of our members live in a particular county. However, these aggregated statistical data is not tied to personally identifiable information.

Legal Disclosures
We will disclose personally identifiable information that we in good faith believe is appropriate to cooperate in investigations of fraud or other illegal activity, or to conduct investigations of violations of our Rules and Regulations. Specifically, this means that if we conduct a violations investigation, and conclude that one side may have engaged in deceptive practices, we can give that person or entity’s personally identifiable information (but not bank account or credit card numbers) to parties who request it.

We will disclose personally identifiable information in response to a validly issued subpoena, warrant, court order, levy, attachment, order of a court-appointed receiver or other comparable legal process, including subpoenas from private parties in a civil action.

We will disclose personally identifiable information to your agent or legal representative (such as the holder of a power of attorney that you grant, or a guardian appointed for you).

As with any other business, it is possible that NJMLS in the future could merge with another company. If this occurs, the successor company would have access to the personally identifiable information maintained by NJMLS, including member account information, but would continue to be bound by this Privacy Policy unless and until it is amended as described in Section A above.

Our Contact with NJMLS Members
We communicate with you on a regular basis via e-mail to provide requested services, and we also communicate by phone to resolve complaints or investigate suspicious transactions. We use your e-mail address to send you bills and notices of due dates, to send notices about important changes to our products and services, service announcements, confirmations of orders placed online, responses to member requests and to send notices and other disclosures required by law. Generally, you cannot opt out of these communications, but they will be primarily educational in nature rather than promotional.

We also use your e-mail address to send you other types of promotional communications, including the NJMLS newsletter, member surveys and notices of special third-party promotions. You can choose whether or not to receive these communications when you complete the registration process, or at any time thereafter, by changing your preferences in the “Add/Modify your Member Information” section of “User Preferences”. You can change your choices at any time.

In connection with independent audits of our financial statements and operations, the auditors may seek to contact a sample of our members to confirm that our records are accurate. However, these auditors cannot use personally identifiable information for any secondary purposes.

Internet Address Information
We use IP addresses, browser types and access times to analyze NJMLS, administer the site, improve site performance and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use.

D. INFORMATION SECURITY

NJMLS is committed to handling your personally identifiable information with high standards of security. We restrict access to your personally identifiable information to employees who need to know that personally identifiable information in order to provide products or services to you or to perform their jobs. We enforce physical and electronic measures to guard your non-public personally identifiable information.

The security of your NJMLS account also relies on your protection of your NJMLS password. We require that you never share your NJMLS password with anyone. If you do share your NJMLS password with a third party for any reason, (other than by someone authorized by NJMLS’ rules) you will be in violation of NJMLS’ Rules and Regulations; the third party will have access to your account and your personally identifiable information, and you may be responsible for actions taken using your password. If you believe someone else has obtained access to your password, please log in to NJMLS, change your password and contact us right away as described below.

NJMLS uses security questions to better verify your identity and better protect your sensitive information. The answers you provide will help in the authentication process if you should forget your login information. Additionally, NJMLS collects forensic access data on login sessions including, but not limited to, keystroke dynamics, locations, time of day, devices, browsers, operating systems, and networks in order to further protect your password, ensure that your login credentials are validated, and secure your sensitive information.

Data Security and Encryption
The security of your personally identifiable information is the core of our business and a top priority at NJMLS. When paying fees in “Internet Member Services,” NJMLS automatically encrypts your personally identifiable information in transit from your computer to ours using the Secure Sockets Layer protocol (SSL) with an encryption key length of 128-bits. Other pages where sensitive information is transferred and SSL is used include the Login page, Homepage and specific “Internet Member Services” pages.

Once your personally identifiable information reaches us, it resides on a server that is heavily guarded both physically and electronically. Our servers sit behind an electronic firewall, so your personally identifiable information is available only to authorized computers.

E. ACCESSING AND CHANGING YOUR PERSONALLY IDENTIFIABLE INFORMATION

You can review the personally identifiable information you provided us and make any desired changes to such personally identifiable information, or to the settings for your NJMLS account, at any time by logging in and changing your personally identifiable information in “Add/Modify your Member Information.”

If/When you are no longer a NJMLS member, we will mark your account in our database as “Terminated,” but will retain your personally identifiable information in our database.

F. CONTACTING US

If you have any questions about this privacy statement, NJMLS’ information practices, or your dealings with NJMLS, you can contact us via email, support@njmls.com.