NAR Says New Guidance Adopted Reinforces Greater Transparency for Consumers
The National Association of Realtors® adopted several changes to its guidance for local Multiple Listing Service broker marketplaces at its Board of Directors meeting Monday, including one that requires MLS to allow brokers and agents to display buyer broker commissions.
In addition to ensuring the disclosure of compensation offered to buyer agents, changes, which NAR says, “reinforce greater transparency for consumers,” also ensure listings are not excluded from search results based on the amount of compensation offered to buyer agents, and reinforce that buyer brokers do not represent their services as free.
“Grounded in our commitment to act in the best interests of buyers and sellers, we regularly review and update our guidance for local broker marketplaces to continue to advance efficient, equitable and transparent practices,” said NAR President Charlie Oppler. “These latest changes more explicitly state what is already the spirit and intent of the NAR Code of Ethics and local broker marketplace guidance regarding consumer transparency and broker participation.”
Pro-consumer changes adopted Monday include:
- Reinforce that local marketplace participants do not represent brokerage services as free. While Realtors® always have been required to advertise their services accurately and truthfully, this change creates a bright line rule on the use of the word “free” that is easy to follow and enforce.
- Ensure disclosure of compensation offered to buyer agents. The change bolsters transparency and Realtors®’ existing duties and practices to talk with their clients about what services they provide and how they are compensated.
- Ensure listings aren’t excluded from search results based on the amount of compensation offered to buyer agents. This changes wording to reiterate Realtors®’ existing duty to inform clients about all relevant properties meeting their criteria.
“This is another example of NAR constantly evolving to ensure pro-consumer, pro-competitive marketplaces for buyers and sellers, and brokers,” Oppler continued. “NAR is proud to be affiliated with the hundreds of local broker marketplaces around the country and will continue to tirelessly pursue changes that improve the real estate experience for all Americans.”
The NAR Board of Directors adopted the changes to take effect Jan. 1, 2022. MLSs have until March to put them in place.
This is a developing story. RISMedia recently sat down with Jon Coile, Chairman of the 2021 NAR MLS Policy Committee and VP of MLS and Industry Relations at HomeServices of America, to discuss these and other best practice changes approved at the committee’s meeting held during NAR, two days ahead of the full board meeting.
Stay tuned to RISMedia for further insights and details and analysis of these changes to MLS and what they mean for the industry.