Alex Lehauli Group Site Logo
NAR Reaches Agreement to Resolve Home Seller Class Action Lawsuits

NAR Reaches Agreement to Resolve Home Seller Class Action Lawsuits

March 16, 2024


NAR Reaches Agreement to Resolve Home Seller Class Action Lawsuits: A Broker's Insight

The real estate community is buzzing with news that could forever change the way homes are bought and sold. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reaches for a landmark agreement aimed at resolving litigation brought by home sellers concerning broker commissions. This significant settlement, still awaiting court approval, addresses longstanding practices regarding how agents are compensated. The ripple effects of this agreement promise to redefine the buying and selling process, marking a pivotal shift in real estate transactions.

As a seasoned real estate broker, I’ve observed that the traditional ways of real estate transactions are in need for  innovation. This agreement stands perfectly as the beginning of such a change. We are currently seeing these changes materialize, impacting how we navigate the market and engage with properties. The industry’s evolution towards a more transparent and flexible transactions could very well start reshaping practices sooner than we think. In this blog, we’ll explore what led to this monumental shift and discuss the potential implications for everyone involved in real estate.

Commissions Issues Explained

The longstanding tradition where sellers pay commissions to both their own and the buyer’s agents is increasingly scrutinized. Sellers are questioning the fairness of shouldering the buyer’s agent fees in addition to all other expenses tied to selling their home. This growing concern reflects a broader call for transparency and a more direct correlation between the fees paid and the actual services provided. As the real estate market evolves, especially with buyers utilizing digital resources to take a more active role in their search, the traditional commission model seems misaligned with current transaction dynamics.

The debate over commission structures has ignited discussions on reforming how agents are compensated, advocating for a system that better reflects the value provided by agents in today’s digitally driven market. Proposals suggest a shift towards a model where buyers would directly negotiate and compensate their agents, fostering a clearer understanding of services rendered and costs involved. With the industry on the brink of significant changes following recent settlements and proposed rules, we’re moving towards a future where commission practices are not only more flexible but also more transparent, ensuring fairness for all parties involved.

How Transaction and commission normally work in Utah

In Utah, as in many states, the process of selling a home begins with the homeowner signing a listing agreement with a real estate agent. This crucial document authorizes the agent to list the home for sale and undertake various marketing efforts to attract potential buyers. A key part of this agreement involves negotiating the commissions, which includes a specific portion dedicated to the buyer’s agent. This buyer agent commission is determined at the outset and is advertised to other real estate professionals, irrespective of the buyer agent’s level of knowledge, experience, or the range of services provided to the buyer. Essentially, once a sale is successfully completed, the seller pays the listing broker, who in turn compensates the buyer’s broker. This system ensures the buyer’s agent is rewarded for their role in facilitating the sale, but it does so without direct consideration of the agent’s contribution to the transaction beyond bringing a buyer who closes on the home.

Let's Get You The Kitchen You Deserve.

What's Changing:

A pivotal aspect of the NAR agreement is the introduction of a rule that will remove offers of compensation from MLS listings by mid-July 2024. This means that there will no longer be an obligation for sellers or listing agents to pre-agree to compensation for the buyer’s agent through the MLS. Instead, compensation can be negotiated off-MLS, offering more flexibility in how deals are structured. This change could also lead to more direct negotiations between buyers and sellers, potentially sidestepping the need for buyer’s agent or putting more value on having a good buyer’s agent.

What this means for Sellers

At first glance, the upcoming changes might suggest that sellers will no longer bear the cost of paying the buyer’s agent. While it’s true that this could become a reality for some transactions, it’s more likely that buyers will continue to seek representation. A proficient buyer’s agent will not only represent the buyer’s interests but will also engage in negotiating price, fess and now commissions. This shifts the dynamic, making the process of buying a property potentially more transparent. 

Moreover, this new framework introduces an opportunity  to negotiate directly how much to compensate the buyer’s agent. This change could enhance the accountability of buyer’s agents, ensuring they add substantial value to both the buyer and the transaction itself. Sellers might find this model more transparent, as it allows for a more tailored approach to commission payments, directly correlating the cost with the service and value provided by the buyer’s agent.

The Future Of Home Buying

The forthcoming changes in the real estate industry are set to exert significant pressure on buyer agents to redefine and demonstrate their value to potential homebuyers. Gone are the days of relying on the assurance that ‘the seller pays my commission.’ In this new landscape, buyer agents face the challenge of convincing buyers to take on the commission obligation, a task made more daunting when considered alongside the myriad other costs associated with purchasing a home. This shift demands that buyer agents not only articulate but also tangibly prove their worth in the home buying process. They must showcase how their expertise, negotiation skills, and market knowledge can genuinely benefit the buyer, far beyond the access to listings or the facilitation of showings. For buyer agents, this change heralds a move towards a more transparent, service-driven approach, where their compensation is directly tied to the value they deliver to their clients.


As we stand on the brink of significant changes within the real estate industry, it’s clear that the way homes are bought and sold is evolving. The shift towards more transparent commission structures represents a pivotal moment, not just for real estate professionals but for buyers and sellers alike. For sellers, this change opens up new avenues for negotiation and places a premium on the value provided by buyer’s agents. For buyer agents, the challenge ahead is clear: they must redefine their role and prove their worth in an increasingly competitive and cost-conscious market.

This evolution towards greater transparency and accountability in real estate transactions promises to benefit all parties involved. Buyers can expect a more service-oriented approach from their agents, sellers gain flexibility in how commissions are handled, and agents are encouraged to showcase their true value. As we navigate these changes, one thing remains certain: the importance of professional guidance in the real estate process has never been more critical. Whether you’re looking to buy or sell, partnering with an experienced real estate expert who understands these dynamics can make all the difference in achieving your property goals in this new era.

Engage with professionals, from realtors to financial advisors, who can guide you through these challenges, leveraging their expertise to turn your home buying journey into a successful adventure. The key to conquering the home buying challenges of 2024 lies in preparation, flexibility, and the right partnerships. Welcome to the future of home buying in Salt Lake, Utah—where your dream home awaits, despite the hurdles along the way.

You're so close to getting your next home!

Schedule a free consultation with our team and let’s make things happen!

Get in touch

Whether you are buying, selling, or have any questions about the market, we are here to provide you with expert guidance and personalized service. Reach out to us today, and let’s start the conversation!

Alex Lehauli


Alex Lehauli Group Site Logo

Join My Newsletter

Find Your Next Home

Join the hundreds of smart home buyers and investors and Get started and make your home search efficient and frustration-free.

Disclaimer: By entering your information and submitting this form, you agree to our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy and that you may be contacted by The Alex Lehauli Group by phone, text message and email about your real estate interests. Frequency of contact may vary and message and data rates may apply. For assistance call 801-891-9436 or text STOP to cancel.