The First Wiki MLS: LAUNCHED!

 I am officially launching, the The First Wiki MLS!

Where BUYER AGENTS, in Virginia and DC, from multiple brokerages come together to ADD information and photo albums to listings they visit. MORE DATA & 1,000+ MORE PHOTOS!

THE “OLD 1.0 WAY”: (see all 31 MLS search engines here)

1) One-Way Information. “Here are homes for sale, as marketed by the listing agent. Take it, trust it, or leave it.”

2) Photoless MLS Listings!

Sure they sell for $15,000 less but they are a pain for everyone. Oftentimes foreclosures or a listing by an underpaid or sucky agent have no photos!

3) Confusing Branding.

Who is selling what? Each of the 60,000 MLS listings are plastered with one “Brought to you by” buyer agent from one brokerage. I tried to explain: “No, I am not listing 1,298 homes,” but it isn’t the consumer’s fault, it is confusing! See my account on a service that many agents pay $30 a month for. My annoying face on each listing.

4) Limited Data or Sign-In Required.

All but a few sites have stopped the practice of requiring users to create an account and login in order to see listings. Also many sites will NOT show you all the data possible. Some even hide the addresses so you have to “call your local trusted Realtor!”

5) Fancy, & Feature Filled, But SLOW

Some of it might be useful, but it slows down the website. Their goal is to have such perfectly targeted results that it can take minutes to find something.

6) Small photos. As our monitor resolutions get higher, the images get smaller. On my screen most MLS sites show 4 inch photos.

7) Computer based. No focus on cell-phone ready searching.

The “NEW 2.0 WAY”:

1) Wiki it!

(Attn Buyer Agents, do you have a progressive office? Let me come and talk at your Tuesday meeting so that more Buyer Agents can get involved.)

The World’s First Wiki MLS. No, we can not CHANGE the listing itself (or the price!) as presented by the listing agent. What we do is ADD comments and photos to the listing and as a community flag and remove inappropriate comments.  Every buyer agent with an ounce of techie-ness should be taking Buyer Agent Photo Albums. What is that? Well, the listing agent takes photos for their sellers to put the house in one light, but the buyer agent takes photos for their clients in a more realistic light. Including shots of how far it might be from a highway, or showing bathroom water damage or a roach infested place (scroll to bottom of those listing to see the comments).

The goal is to add information, and not opinions. No “this house stinks” or “this house is great,” but instead factual information like “This house backs to Rt 66” or “This house is listed at 44.6% lower than the purchase price in 2006.” Information not evident in the listing agent’s presentation. I wish everyone was like Loudoun agents Tony and Danilo with their Blogback blogging for feedback where they list the pros and cons of their listings and ask buyer agents to leave comments. How can you find the reviewed homes? When you do a search on, homes with a YELLOW highlighter, those have the comments, see an example search for 1021 Clarendon.

2) 1,000 More Photos Than ALL other MLS sites.

So far, prelaunch, 10 buyer agents from 5 firms add photo albums with as many as 40 photos of 50 properties. With this, the database grows to thousands of extra photos. Consumers want PHOTOS,PHOTOS, PHOTOS and on our co-opetition website,  several otherwise competing agents come together to give what the customer wants… MORE INFO and PHOTOS.

Sidenote: A year ago I bought a baseball glove from It was photoless. After getting the glove, they asked if I would take a photo of it and post it on Amazon. That is what first gave me the idea for this Wiki MLS. (see post)

The site also has a point system. 1 point for comments, and 10 points for a photo album. For that, the contributor is listed underneath the listing instead of my mugshot on each listing (see above). They also get a front page link to their website. Why contact me as a buyer agent, if another agent has actually BEEN to the property, specializes in that area and has helped you get more information on it.

Buyer agents, her
e is a ”
how to add the photo albums.”


3) No branding, advertising, or logins required. Other than the required link from the site owner (me) at the bottom of each page, there is no advertising or cheesy recommended buyer agent next to each listing. Only when a buyer agent contributes to a listing with comments or a photo album, do they get a link to their site. Also, you should already have a buyer’s agent by the time you hit this site.

4) ALL MLS DATA(that is legally allowed to be shown) We show everything. Including BOTH the Days on the Market-M (MLS#) and Days on the Market- P (Property). Otherwise known as DOMM and DOMP We even show you the “within the industry ‘you must be nuts’ listing agent’s name and number. Only 1 other site does that. Don’t worry agents, there is a disclaimer that says NOT to call the listing agent and why. So why have it? Well the consumer should ultimately decide.

What we can NOT legally show is: Realtor Remarks, Compensation amount (ask your agent if they take buyer agent bribes), Owner’s phone number, showing instructions and lockbox codes.

5) Not Fancy, just FAST.Except for photos of houses, there is not one graphic, icon, logo on the site. No Geewhiz, just speed. With that comes fewer features, but how many features do you see on Google or Craigslist? Just give me info fast, even if it isn’t 100% accurate (as in there might be a “madison manor” in both Arlington and Baltimore). searches by keyword only. I know that looking at 400 homes can take a ton of time. The goal was to count each click and scroll in the home buying process and cut that time down by 80%.

  1. “Sexy?” homes? Search the Realtor Public Remarks. Try it, search for “sexy.” Only a 3 of the 33 local MLS sites will let you search the Realtor Public Remarks as part of an advanced search. Some information in these remarks can’t be found in any drop down or checkbox search. For example: Lake Ridge Short Sales or Arlington Metro
  2. Keyword search for ANYTHING.One box, search anything. Including, search by ZipCodes, subdivision name, school name (if the agent put it in), street name, street number, city, brokerage name, and even by agent name (nobody does that). It takes getting used to, but it works for Google and Craigslist, dso it works for
  3. Spreadsheet mode. Search like the Realtor‘s back end system. Text only results to quickly find what you need. Also the columns show you in a quick second the List price, Original Starting price, Tax assessment and DOMp/m. (See link above)
  4. Photos only mode. Just a page full of 50 medium sized images. For the quick glance.
  5. Photos and Details mode with image rollover. Most sites that have this mode have useless 1 inch images. We show in this mode the 4 inch images that other sites use for their “full size.” Also you can use a rollover link to see all the other 2-30 images.

6) HUGE PHOTOS. Example. All the other sites use the 4 inch photos for each listing. Probably to leave room for mortgage calculators, frames, ads etc. We instead are the only ones that pull the high res 7 inch photos as the DEFAULT. Bigger is better.

7) Cell Phone Ready. Nobody offers this… for FREE.


With the former slogan, “So easy, a cellphone could use it,” the site wasn’t designed for the cellphone, but it is so simple that it still works great on most cell phones. I recommend the “photo mode.” This is perfect for when you are in front of a house and want to get the details. I suggest using the house # and the zipcode.


Other interesting features:

  • FACEBOOK integration.We all have been asking ourselves if a useful tool for Facebook will come up. Well now there is one. You can “save” each listing into your Facebook account with 1 click. Then your friends can comment on what you have selected, or you can share them easily with loved ones.
  • Super Short URLS. for easy copy and pasting. (Update: we just dropped the .html) into an email for others to share. I’m obsessed with “easy.”
  • Super Short Search Strings: (soon this will be even shorter). You can also bookmark the search string to quickly see all listings for that search.
  • Find Similar Results: If you see a “more” or a “>>” click it to find similar homes or to see ALL the listings that a particular agent has (great for comparing listing agents!).
  • Links to similar Craigslist FSBOs, and to Zillow for previous sale data.
  • Link to that property on Google maps. Click on the “map” link.

So that pretty much wraps it up. I hope you have enjoy the site. I would love to get some feedback from current users (see Feedback $$ contest), local agents and others on how to improve the site.

– Written by Frank Borges LLosa-Broker/Owner

Reviews of, the new Wiki MLS (send me your review)

  • 8
  • April
  • 2008

79 Responses to “The First Wiki MLS: LAUNCHED!”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Frank, I love your WIKI site! Great job.


  2. Anonymous says:

    Any plans to expand to Montgomery County?

  3. JB says:

    FranklyMLS is broken — clicking on a house give an error. Even clicking the “Feedback = $$” link has an error. Looking forward to seeing this fixed. I like the site and have recommended it to others.

  4. Anonymous says:

    God bless you. I tripped across this site somehow and I want to tell you how grateful I am to plain, straightforward information. I actually used to call up the local county assessment office to find out the taxes and assessment for properties I was interested in looking at, but you have saved me that step. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

  5. FRANK LL0SA Va Broker- says:

    Anonymous said…
    “Any plans to expand to Montgomery County?”

    Yep, it is now in there.

  6. FRANK LL0SA Va Broker- says:

    Hey JB,
    Thanks for your comment. I will write a blog post soon about our glitch. Who knew so many people were using it. It had to go down for a day to see people come out of the woodwork.


  7. Nicanor says:

    Frank, thank you, thank you, thank you.

    We just closed Friday, April 25 on a house that I found using your site. “Dumfries bank owned” were my keywords and the rest is history. This house sold for 650K in 2006, got it for 40% off!!! WOW!!! Thanks again and good luck with this site.

    Nicky Fulgencio

  8. david says:

    On multi-page search results, have a “prev”, “next” link. It is much easter just to click on “next” to see the next page then to use the select box.

  9. JoshB says:

    What does the * next to listings and asking price mean? I think this is new.

  10. FRANK LL0SA Va Broker- says:

    Great question Josh,
    We are working on highlighting possible Short Sales with the *. Make sure to subscribe and you will get emailed the next post that talks about that feature.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Easily the best site for home buying that we’ve found, bar none. My wife and I were ecstatic when we found this site, in particular because of the number of photos included and, generally speaking, the completeness of the information included for each listing (interior square footage is always the first to go!).

    If I could add one suggestion: Allow more refined price searches, instead of $100,000 increments ($50k isn’t always available for some reason) and allow searches within search results, if possible. For example, if I sort by DOMm/p, I’d like to search by price high to low. Also, any chance of limiting searches by home type (SFH, townhouse, etc.)?

    I’m nitpicking though — thanks for the site!

  12. Anonymous says:

    wonderful site, saved my realtor a hundred hours having to do my searches for me. ideas would be to make the columns sortable (click header to sort that column), or if not then make it exportable to a spreadsheet.

    if there is a command language i missed it but with all that there is to read it is amazing i’m off the first page at all. BG really though, i love your site and i have been pushing both of my realtors to use it.

    happy in woodbridge va

  13. FRANK LL0SA Va Broker- says:

    Hey Anonymous, Can you email me directly. I’d love to hear more about how it saved you hours.

    Thanks for your post


  14. Fadi says:

    This is an awesome site. I love the no nonsence approach without all the fancy frames and ads all over the page. I too love the concept of keeping it simple.

  15. Cara says:


    loving the new Gallery option. Combined with neighborhood names, this is a great way to get a sense of the neighborhood. It’s just like looking at the real-estate section of the newspaper, but in color and customized. I love it!

    Also loving the sort by price relative to tax assessment. Much fun to be had.

  16. FRANK LL0SA Va Broker- says:

    Thanks Cara,
    Good to hear. Most people use the spreadsheet mode, so I am glad you like the Gallery mode.
    Can you do me a favor and answer the questions in the “Feedback” link? And email them to the address provided?

    Look out soon for easy to sign up email alerts!



  17. Anonymous says:

    Franky, the site is great and has been my first search priority for updates since introduced.

    Also, it would be helpful to be able to search by Square Footage (Sqft).

  18. Anonymous says:

    iHELP HELP HELPFUL INSIGHT REQUESTED: Won bid on home, qualified with several lenders; however, was told that if we want home we must qualify with specific lender – NO problem – WRONG, no been told if we want home we must finance via the same lender – Problem – particular lender rates and cost is not competitive with others – in fact worst. I his this legal or other to dictate a specific lender and no provide fairness to other lenders or the buyers choice based upon rates? No dealing with the bank directly just lender on listing. Was I awared the bid or was I not? – inputted appreciated – fast.

  19. tired * buyer, VA says:

    Great idea and very helpful site!
    If possible please add info about sold and under contract properties.
    FranklyMLS rulez!

  20. Ali says:

    Frank –

    2009 Tax Assessments are among us (at least for Fairfax County). What about using 09 Tax $$ rather then 08 – they are much lower unfortunately and this shows what crappy pricing job some realtors do on some properties and why homes sit on the market for soooo long.

    Again, I’m a seller/buyer and not an agent, so, I would love to hear your prospective on this.

  21. FRANK LL0SA Va Broker- says:

    Hey Ali,
    YOu, like many buyers, incorrectly rely on tax data. How does a computer in the sky some how mean reliable pricing info for a house? Really should not be using that data.

    Also we pull our data from MRIS which only has 08 data. We do link easily to the tax records in Fairfax.

  22. What a unique concept. I will try out your Wiki and see for myself if it is something we need in Charlotte, NC. Thnaks.

  23. Maggie says:

    Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! I’m getting what feels like minimal effort from my agent and I often feel like I’m drowning in the online search results from multiple sites. Your site is EXACTLY what I needed! Thank you!

  24. Camille says:

    Your site is awesome! So much information. Thanks!

  25. mimi says:

    Hi Frank,

    We’ve been exclusively using your site ever since we discovered it online. We now are telling our agent to check it out too.

    I have a couple of questions. You have descriptions for many of the columns in the spreadsheet, but I couldn’t find one for “Pix”. What does that stand for? Also does “#V” mean the hits on or total hits in all MLS sites?

    Thanks you very much.

    Mimi, VA

  26. says:

    Pix is the # of photos that we have for that house.
    #V is # of unique views to the “more info” on that particular house. And it ONLY counts views on FranklYMLS. I wish I could track visitors on other sites.

  27. Howard says:

    Can you, or anyone else, suggest a site nearly as great as FranklyMLS for properties in Las Vegas or South Florida?

  28. Lynn says:

    Hi Frank,

    For some property listings, I noticed a “f” next to the number in the Price column. What does that “f” stand for?


  29. Jeff says:

    Frank, is pure gold! As a first-time buyer, it is easy to be overwhelmed and under informed. is a huge help, and I’m so grateful for it. Many thanks!

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