Baldwin Realtors Responds To Real Estate Settlement

The Baldwin REALTORS Association has responded to recent developments announced by the National Association of REALTORS (NAR). On March 15, NAR announced a settlement that aims to end claims related to broker commissions. This proposed agreement, still pending court approval, removes the ability for sellers to advertise buyer-broker compensation on the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) platform and requires negotiations regarding compensation to occur directly between the parties in each transaction. Baldwin REALTORS said that a false narrative that has been circulating is that there is a standard set commission rate for real estate agents. In reality, NAR does not set commissions; they are negotiable. The rule being eliminated is the requirement that commissions be advertised on MLS. Baldwin REALTORS reaffirms that commissions are negotiable and stresses the significance of transparent negotiations between parties. While NAR asserts no wrongdoing, the agreement reflects its commitment to resolving issues in a manner beneficial to its members and consumers. The settlement provides a path forward. However, the association acknowledges potential challenges for first-time homebuyers and lower-income buyers if an offer of buyer-broker compensation is not provided by the selling party. “Without an offer of buyer-broker compensation from the selling party, first-time homebuyers and lower-income buyers may experience difficulty in obtaining a realtor expert to walk them through the homebuying process,” says Baldwin REALTORS President Jaime Cooper. This is due in part to current mortgage financing rules that limit how buyer-side commissions can be financed.

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