MLSListings Square Footage Policy

Recently, we have received some questions about the proper way to report a building’s square footage. The SqFt and Lot Size fields depicted below are those in question.

When entering a property listing, the system will auto-populate the building’s Square Footage and Lot Size directly from the Realist public records data service. If the auto-populated data is incorrect the listing agent is able to correct the information but must also change the source of that change. The choices today are by “Seller,” “Agent” or “Paid Vendor.”

The value for this data field is intended to represent one thing, and one thing only – the building’s primary livable, permitted square footage.

It is not a data point that should include garages, other buildings or un-permitted structures. Aggregated totals and descriptions of other structures may be disclosed in the public and private remarks, but not included in the square footage value data field.

It is critical that the data entered in any field on the MLS be accurate and reliable. All of our subscribers use this important information for valuations, trends, statistics and other meaningful and valuable analytics.

By entering square footage that aggregates other areas, this abuse devalues the MLS data for cooperating brokers and agents, their clients and the general public. It also affects the credibility and professionalism of the REALTOR community at large.

The brokers and agents of MLSListings have established a rule which requires data accuracy and determines how listings modifying square footage to include non-livable, non-permitted areas are found in violation.

8.3 Accuracy of Information; Responsibility for Accuracy

By inputting information into the MLS computer database, the listing broker represents that the information input is accurate to the best of the listing broker’s knowledge. The listing broker shall use good faith efforts to determine the accuracy of the information and shall not submit or input information which the listing broker knows to be inaccurate.

If you have any questions, or need help please contact the MLSListings Compliance Department at 408-874-0200 option 5 or via email at


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