The "Real Estate Transaction Standard (RETS) is the new open standard for exchanging real estate transaction information. Consisting of a transaction specification and a standard Extensible Markup Language (XML) Document Type Definition (DTD), RETS is being implemented by many real estate industry leaders in their next generation of real estate information systems." Version 1.0 of a DTD (Real Estate Transaction Specification [RETS] DTD) is available. The Web site at RETS-WG.ORG "is the central repository for information about the Real Estate Transaction Standard, or RETS. The web site is maintained by the RETS Working Group, which is the organization responsible for publishing, maintaining and enhancing the standard. The RETS Working Group maintains three mailing lists to which interested developers and users can subscribe for information and discussion about RETS."
From the 'Real Estate Transaction Standard Protocol Specification': "This specification is the first part of a two part series defining the interchange of real estate information. The purpose of this document is to define a specification for the exchange of real estate property information, with the intent of eventually describing all interchangeable aspects of a real estate transaction. It defines a standard interface by which a client program may communicate with an property data server. The specification defines a protocol for implementing transactions, and incorporates an Extensible Markup Language (XML) specification for general purpose interchange. The specification also provides for a compressed data interchange format and specification to allow interchange of machine-interpretable property information. This second document, the Real Estate Transaction DTD defines the general structure of the XML DTD that can be used in transferring information from the server."
From the 'Real Estate Data Interchange Standard: Real Estate Transaction DTD (RETML)' (Draft of May 11, 1999 by Dan Musso): "This specification is the second part of a two part series defining the interchange of real estate information. The initial document in this set, the Real Estate Transaction Specification specifies a method used for the exchange of real estate property information. This second document defines the general structure of the XML DTD that can be used for the exchange of real estate property information, with the intent of eventually describing all interchangeable aspects of a real estate transaction. It defines a standard interface by which a general purpose interchange of data can be provided. 1.2 Certification - 'The National Association of REALTORS (NAR) intends to implement a certification program under which a third-party product may be declared RETS Compliant, and include an NAR-designated logo on the client or server based product and any associated promotional materials'."
Press release: "New Data Standards Will Dramatically Change Real Estate."
[June 26, 2000] "Standards Watch: VISTAinfo Participates in Proof-of-Concept Tests For NAR-Sponsored RETS. RETS Open Systems Architecture Provides Seamless Data Exchange for VISTAinfo's National MLS Infrastructure." By Patrick Spreng. In CMPNet CommWeb (June 20, 2000). "VISTAinfo announced its role in the proof-of-concept tests for the real estate transaction standard (RETS). RETS is the open data exchange standard sanctioned by the National Association of REALTORS (NAR) and developed with the participation of VISTAinfo and other Industry leaders. RETS open system architecture allows seamless data exchange between two different applications, regardless of the vendor. VISTAinfo is using RETS to deliver technologies that let real estate professionals and organizations share and manipulate data faster than ever before. . . . In mid-May VISTAinfo took a giant leap in empowering real estate professionals through superior technology by announcing the creation of an online, National Multiple Listing Service Infrastructure (NMI). NMI will be the industry's first national MLS infrastructure built on RETS. NMI will be available to all MLSs nationwide and is intended to enhance and add value to their services while not removing local MLS control. NMI incorporates the RETS XML open standard for open and secure communications among all real estate professionals -- agent, franchise or broker systems -- that also use NAR standards-based tools. It can also serve as the open platform for transaction engines currently under development by HomeStore.com and HomeAdvisor for seamless, secure connections to the MLS listing database and office management software to avoid duplicate or triplicate listing and prospect entry. Currently, there are few MLSs that can keep pace with every facet of the home buying/selling transaction because of the rapid technological change in the real estate industry. NMI, utilizing RETS, leverages the collective strengths of individual MLSs while mitigating weaknesses to provide a superior service to every REALTOR. This, in turn, will contribute to an enhanced agent/customer relationship through expanded customer service."