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Realtor, broker weighs in on potential rule change for commission

The National Association of Realtors, the largest trade group in the nation agreed to pay $418 million to settle class action lawsuits over broker commissions.
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Posted at 9:41 AM, Mar 18, 2024

SHOREWOOD — Real estate agent and broker Sophia Barry based in Shorewood said she heard about the major settlement Friday morning. She owns Sophia Barry Realty Group.

"I'm not panicking at all,” Barry explained.

The National Association of Realtors, the largest trade group in the nation agreed to pay $418 million to settle class action lawsuits over broker commissions. As part of the settlement, they admit to no wrongdoing.

Commissions are typically up to 6% of the purchase price.

"We're very used to that kind of generic concept of a co-broke commission being right there listed on a listing and that's going to go away,” Barry explained.

Sellers, home buyers, and agents would be able to negotiate fees upfront.

A practice Barry really believes in. "I've always made it a point to have conversations with my clients on both sides, seller and buyer negotiate my commission. Make sure that they understand what's going into it. And how I'm working for them to earn that.”

However, she says larger firms typically don't budge on the percentage. "It's an unspoken best practice to do a certain rate."

Barry said we could see some buyers and sellers not hiring an agent. Something she doesn’t recommend.

"You're going to realize really quickly that it's kind of the wild west out here. It's a really fast-moving market right now. Especially on the buyer side. And I can't imagine being a buyer trying to navigate it without an agent,” Barry explained.

If this settlement is approved, rules will change in mid-July.