[November 13, 2000] The Alliance for Advanced Real Estate Transaction Technology (AARTT) announced an initiative "to create open standards for data exchange within the real estate industry in order to streamline the online home-buying and selling process. The initiative is called CRTML (Comprehensive Real Estate Transaction Markup Language). Member companies include: 9keys, AppraisalHub, Bowstreet, Commission Advance, Deloitte & Touche, GHR Systems, Homeadvisor Technologies Inc., Homebid, iLumin, Inciscent, InfoStream, Instanet Forms, InteliTouch, Interealty, iProperty, MarketLinx, Property I.D., Supra Products, and VISTAinfo. The mission of AARRT is to promote and coordinate data interchange standards for the Real Estate industry, based on XML, that will significantly enhance and automate all key elements of Real Estate transactions allowing forging of strong alliances between Real Estate technology providers to foster end-to-end solutions for the industry, and by doing this, to facilitate the acceleration of migrating existing industry participants core business processes towards fully integrated and streamlined Real Estate transactions. The initial objectives or AARTT are: (1) to coordinate the development of standards between the various groups -- RETS, MISMO, LegalXML, etc., (2) to promote the development of standards in areas of the industry not covered by existing initiatives, and (3) to develop interoperability standards between segments of the industry. The results of this effort, in cooperation with the segment-specific standards bodies, will be what we call a Comprehensive Real Estate Transaction Markup Language (CRTML), which adds an interoperability standard so that each of the segment XML standards can talk with one another without friction. It is AARTT's goal to incorporate current schemas wherever practical and participate in an open dialog with all recognized XML workgroups currently active in the Real Estate sector. At the same time, AARTT will continue forging efficiently ahead to develop CRTML which will be designed to augment and fill the gaps in existing schemas while forming the agreed upon foundation for data-interchange between all parties in the Alliance. Each Alliance partner company will agree to incorporate the CRTML standard into its products as soon as possible after release of the specification. By analyzing the core data elements that are required by all participants in order to transact real estate, CRTML will be able to significantly speed up the process of delivering on the promise of seamless data interchange, and efficient, end-to-end, single-point of data entry systems."
Background and rationale: "Of all the recent changes technology has fueled, the most momentous change for the real estate industry has been the emergence of the net-empowered consumer. This new breed has increasingly high expectations for speed, convenience, quality, and customer service. Many high-tech companies in other sectors are offering these features to consumers through the Internet, and real estate is struggling to keep pace. Home buying and selling have traditionally been complicated multi-step multi-participant processes, but new economy consumers now perceive this model as too time consuming and burdensome. At the same time, the real estate broker, mortgage, title, and recording segments of the industry have been looking for internal solutions to increase efficiency and to reduce the time it takes to complete a real estate transaction. Several initiatives are underway to define specifications for portions of the industry (RETS, MISMO, ACORD, LegalXML, and others). Without working to make these various standards to work together, it could literally take years for the different segments to collaborate to establish interoperability standards."
AARTT - The Alliance for Advanced Real Estate Transaction Technology.
[November 13, 2000] "Newly Formed Alliance to Develop Open Technology Standards For the Online Real Estate Industry. Seamless Data Exchange Will Lead to Integrated and Streamlined e-Real Estate Transactions." - "A consortium of companies today announced their initiative to create open standards for data exchange within the real estate industry in order to streamline the online home-buying and selling process. The Alliance for Advanced Real Estate Transaction Technology's (AARTT) initiative is called CRTML (comprehensive real estate transaction markup language). Member companies are: 9keys, AppraisalHub, Bowstreet, Commission Advance, Deloitte & Touche, GHR Systems, Homeadvisor Technologies Inc., Homebid, iLumin, Inciscent, InfoStream, Instanet Forms, InteliTouch, Interealty, iProperty, MarketLinx, Property I.D., Supra Products, and VISTAinfo. Though several attempts are underway to define specifications for portions of the real estate industry, including online mortgages, it may take years for the different sub-industries to integrate the systems. By defining the core data elements necessary by all e-real estate participants, CRTML will significantly speed the development of a seamless data exchange. 'The main purpose for founding the Alliance is to turbo-charge cooperation among existing vertical standards efforts and build interoperability between them; we believe that strong technology alliances within our industry are crucial for innovation and value creation,' said Ari Vidali, chief technology officer for iProperty and AARTT founder. "CRTML will act as the connective tissue between real estate transaction systems. This will allow participants to migrate core business processes toward a fully integrated real estate e-transaction. The resulting end-to-end solutions will create new value for everyone involved by dramatically reducing the friction present in the transaction today..."
[November 13, 2000] "New XML group forms. Frustration builds over lack of communication with other groups." By Carl D. Holcombe. In Inman News Features (November 13, 2000). "Worries over a lack of cooperation and potentially restrictive controls have spurred the creation of a new XML standards group for online real estate. Announced Sunday at the National Association of Realtors' convention, the six-week-old Alliance for Advanced Real Estate Transaction Technology brings together nearly 20 companies in Web realty. The alliance hopes to set up XML standards for data and documents, and act as a bridge to other XML groups and companies. XML, essentially a common ground for data exchange, is generally considered as a way to create easily transferable documents and information between branches of online realty, such as title and mortgage companies, and real estate agents and multiple listing services. 'Certain people have been adding friction to the process hoping that will allow (their role and business) to stay around longer,' said Ari Vidali, chief technology officer for iProperty. 'So the question is how can we create a frictionless proposition.' He said AART hoped to make significant progress to establishing better communication on XML standards. Vidali said XML standards, despite the NAR- and Homestore-driven Real Estate Transaction Standards (RETS), have been slow to fruition. The group does not oppose RETS, although there is an undercurrent of concern over NAR and Homestore control over such valuable defining standards, which could create barriers to rival businesses, some AART members said. NAR and Homestore.com are not members of the new alliance. Some members are concerned that other players in online realty are more focused on maintaining control within their niche. Such an environment, they said, could delay XML standards integration by many months or even years. Besides RETS and the Mortgage Industry Standards Organization, other XML groups exist for areas such as legal contract data, classified advertising, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and insurance, said Vidali. AART is expected to grow to between 75 and 100 companies and groups by first-quarter 2001. The group is also open to for-sale-by-owner companies..."