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March 19, 2024

Getting the Facts & Preparing for the Future

Last Friday, our members and consumers awoke to news that the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) reached a proposed agreement to resolve nationwide claims brought by home sellers related to broker commissions. This proposed settlement is a culmination of NAR’s efforts to strengthen the Association and continue to take steps to lead our industry forward.

Since that news broke, the majority of national media headlines and social posts have been false and misleading, at best. In a March 19th press release, NAR addressed these inaccuracies stating, “NAR does not set commissions – they are negotiable. The rule that has been the subject of litigation requires only that listing brokers communicate an offer of compensation. That offer can be any amount, including zero.”

Overall, NAR’s proposed agreement is positive and provides a path forward for consumers and REALTORS®. It reinforces the importance of representation agreements to help consumers understand exactly what services and value will be provided by their REALTOR® and for how much. Also, the proposed agreement retains consumers’ rights to continue to have cooperative compensation as an option.

Greater Chattanooga REALTORS® has been preparing for how to best support our members based on the possible outcomes of the ongoing litigation. It’s important for members to focus and prepare now, in anticipation of the proposed settlement being approved. We strive to offer our members training to help them navigate the ever-changing industry, and this year is no exception.

In the recent and coming months, our focus is on buyer consultation and representation agreements, communication with and education of sellers on their options for paying buyers’ agents or offering concessions to buyers, and ways to embrace these new opportunities. To help members in these areas, our 2024 course schedule includes numerous national designations, such as the Accredited Buyer Representative (ABR), Seller Representative Specialist (SRS), and Real Estate Negotiation Expert (RENE) designations. Each course is designed to elevate the REALTOR®’s professionalism and personal performance in serving the consumer.

I encourage our members to learn the facts and discuss them with their buyer and seller clients to help dispel the untruths circulating. REALTORS® should review the resources available at, using their membership login. Also, I encourage REALTORS® to access all the many resources at to use in listing presentations and buyer consultations.

I am confident our leadership team and staff are prepared to support our members in continuing to be successful in providing their clients with choices and service options that bring value to each transaction.