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  • Andrea Garcia

New Era of Buyer Agreements: What You Need to Know.

In the world of real estate, things are always changing. At AGR, we believe it's important for you to be up-to-date to succeed. We're committed to not only helping you find your perfect home but also making sure the whole process is clear and easy. For our trusted professionals, it's important for you to know we always remain at the forefront of any real estate news to ensure we're helping your client's at our highest capacity. That's why we're excited to talk about some important updates about buyer agreements and MLS policies that will affect how we work together.


Understanding the National Association of Realtors (NAR) Settlement:

Here's a breakdown of the key updates and clarifications you need to be aware of NAR has recently implemented that affect how properties are listed and accessed.


1. Release of Liability

The agreement would release NAR, over one million NAR members, all state/territorial and local REALTOR® associations, all REALTOR® MLSs, and all brokerages with an NAR member as principal whose residential transaction volume in 2022 was $2 billion or below from liability for the types of claims brought in these cases on behalf of home sellers related to broker commissions. 


  • NAR fought to include all members in the release and was able to ensure more than one million members are included.

  • Despite NAR’s efforts, agents affiliated with HomeServices of America and its related companies—the last corporate defendant still litigating the Sitzer-Burnett case—are not released under the settlement, nor are employees of the remaining corporate defendants named in the cases covered by this settlement.

  • The agreement provides a mechanism for nearly all brokerage entities that had a residential transaction volume in 2022 that exceeded $2 billion, and MLSs not wholly owned by REALTOR® associations to obtain releases efficiently if they choose to use it. Individual members and all brokerages with an NAR member as principal whose residential transaction volume in 2022 was $2 billion or below are released by the agreement and not required to opt in.


2. Compensation Offers Moved Off the MLS - The most misunderstood!

NAR has agreed to put in place a new rule prohibiting offers of compensation on the MLS. It's important to note that offers of compensation could continue to be an option for consumers and can be pursued off-MLS through negotiation and consultation with real estate professionals. And sellers can offer buyer concessions on an MLS (for example—concessions for buyer closing costs). This change will go into effect August 17, 2024.


  • Written agreements for MLS Participants acting for buyers: While NAR has been advocating for the use of written agreements for years, in this settlement we have agreed to require MLS Participants working with buyers to enter into written agreements with their buyers before touring a home. This change will go into effect August 17, 2024.


3. Settlement Payment

NAR would pay $418 million over approximately four years. This is a substantial sum, and it will be incumbent on NAR to use our remaining resources in the most effective way possible to continue delivering on our core mission. NAR will not change membership dues for 2024 or 2025 because of this payment.


4. NAR Continues to Deny Any Wrongdoing

NAR has long maintained—and we continue to believe—that cooperative compensation and NAR’s current policies are good things that benefit buyers and sellers. They promote access to property ownership, particularly for lower- and middle-income buyers who can have a difficult-enough time saving for a down payment. With this settlement, NAR is confident it and its members can still achieve all those goals.




5. Embracing Transparency for a Better Future

As we navigate these changes together, it's important to remember that they're ultimately aimed at fostering trust and transparency in every real estate transaction. By clearly outlining expectations and responsibilities, we can elevate the standard of professionalism within our industry.


For more detailed information, be sure to visit our resource hub on www.facts.realtor, where you can access the full FAQ and stay updated on any further guidance.


If you have any questions or need help, our team is here for you whenever you need. Don't hesitate to get in touch with us.


We appreciate your ongoing partnership and trust in Andrea Garcia Realty.

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