NAR-DOJ rule change not coming for months

In November 2020, the U.S. Department of Justice filed an antitrust suit against NAR alleging its rules hamper competition. At the same time, it filed a proposed settlement that NAR said it would work with the DOJ on complying with. That proposed settlement would repeal rules that prohibit MLS participants from sharing compensation information to consumers, require MLS participants to display buyer’s agent compensation to consumers, preventing MLS participants from advertising that their services are free, prevent MLSs allowing agents to filter listings by buyer’s agent commissions, and require all MLSs to allow lockbox access to all participants. In November, the public display of buyer broker commissions and lockbox access for all agents were planned to be in place at the end of March. These changes will not take place until May at the earliest, Inman reports. The realm of commissions remains a scrutinized subject for NAR and the industry. This settlement is may just be the first of industry changes around how the industry has traditionally handled commissions.