Real Estate Agent Magazine Law and Ethics NAR Attorneys Affirm: Buyer Representation Remains Relevant

NAR Attorneys Affirm: Buyer Representation Remains Relevant

Real estate professionals should remain focused on serving their consumers and communicating openly about any compensation plans. NAR plans to appeal this verdict.

At NAR NXT: The REALTOR(r) Experience(link is external), held Monday in Anaheim, Calif., NAR attorneys confirmed that the Sitzer/Burnett verdict does not preclude offering cooperating compensation packages to sellers in their best interest, according to listing brokers and their clients. Listing brokers decide how much compensation to offer based solely on what their seller wants; negotiations between brokers and clients take place between themselves when setting commission rates for these deals. Following this verdict, real estate professionals should continue engaging in open dialogue about their services offered and payment arrangements, according to real estate professionals at large, stated NAR attorneys present.

NAR Chief Legal Officer Katie Johnson recommended real estate pros continue using buyer representation agreements, as these provide “an opportunity for professionals to have crucial conversations with consumers regarding your value, services provided and how you will work for their best interests. Furthermore, she added, it’s imperative they stress negotiability of compensation in every transaction they work on.

“When working with clients to sell property, inform them about their options when it comes to compensating buyer agents,” Johnson suggested. This may involve offering them compensation from either your listing agent, seller or buyer or using some combination thereof – such as paying directly. Let sellers know how offering compensation to buyer’s agents benefits them by making home buying more affordable for potential buyers – ultimately broadening your pool of potential buyers for your property.

Johnson reiterated that compensation has long been negotiable and there is no set standard or amount for agent compensation; and NAR doesn’t dictate what agents charge. She suggested using listing and buyer agreements to inform clients exactly what services and value are being provided as well as exactly how much is charged per service or value provided.

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