Real Estate

70% of Agents Oppose NAR Settlement, 67% Public Support: Clever Real Estate

70% of agents oppose NAR settlement, while 67% of the public supports it, survey reveals.

By Doug Elli

6/11, 18:24 EDT
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Key Takeaway

  • 70% of real estate agents oppose the NAR settlement, while 67% of the general public supports it, highlighting a significant divide.
  • 61% of consumers agree that home sellers covering buyer’s agent commissions is unfair; 89% of agents disagree with this view.
  • Agents anticipate negative impacts from the settlement, including discouraging first-time buyers (88%) and hurting buyers overall (82%).

Public vs. Professional Sentiment on NAR Settlement

The recent settlement agreement by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) has sparked a significant divide between the general public and real estate professionals. According to a survey by Clever Real Estate, 67% of the public supports the changes, while 70% of real estate agents oppose them. This disparity highlights a fundamental difference in perspectives on the implications of the settlement, which aims to address the fairness and competitiveness of commission practices in the real estate industry.

Survey Insights: Public and Agent Perspectives

The survey, conducted in April 2024, polled 1,000 consumers and 331 real estate professionals. While two-thirds of the public support the changes, only 36% were aware of the settlement. In contrast, 70% of agents have fielded questions from clients about the settlement's impact on commissions. The public largely agrees with the lawsuit's primary argument that home sellers covering the buyer’s agent commission is unfair, while a vast majority of agents (89%) believe the allegations lack validity. This discrepancy underscores the differing stakes and concerns between consumers and industry professionals.

Broader Implications for the Real Estate Market

The settlement's broader implications are multifaceted. For instance, 71% of agents anticipate negative repercussions, such as discouraging first-time buyers and hurting overall market dynamics. Conversely, only 40% of consumers share this concern. Additionally, 58% of agents foresee a negative impact on their business, while only 15% expect a positive outcome. These findings suggest that while consumers may see potential benefits in terms of reduced financial burdens and increased trust, agents are more focused on the operational challenges and market uncertainties introduced by the settlement.

Industry Reactions and Adaptations

Real estate professionals are already adapting to the impending changes. For example, Michael Nourmand of Nourmand & Associates has proactively updated his firm's website to display buyer agent compensation, aiming to streamline the process and attract more traffic. Nourmand believes that despite the settlement, the fundamental dynamics of commission negotiations will persist, especially in higher price segments where buyers are well-informed. This proactive approach reflects a broader industry trend of seeking ways to maintain competitiveness and transparency in a shifting regulatory landscape.

Divergent Views on Future Market Dynamics

The settlement has also sparked divergent views on future market dynamics. While 91% of Americans believe the settlement will impact future homebuyers and sellers, the anticipated effects vary. Consumers expect lower commission rates and increased competition, while agents predict more days on the market and stable commission rates. Notably, 95% of agents believe the changes will drive more professionals out of the industry, highlighting concerns about increased competition and fee negotiations. These contrasting expectations underscore the uncertainty and potential for significant shifts in the real estate market.