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395 Realty: A Pioneer in Landmark Changes Now Facing the Real Estate Industry

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In 2023, a Missouri Court handed down a ground-shaking judgment of $1.78 billion against the National Association of Realtors, or NAR, and some residential brokerage firms for conspiring to inflate commissions. NAR recently settled for $418 million and two additional terms that could likely change the real estate industry forever. These changes are set to take effect in July or August 2024 and will have a profound effect on how real estate transactions and commissions are negotiated.

There are two changes agreed to by NAR that likely stem from a brief filed by the Department of Justice. First, it eliminates offering buyer broker commission compensation through Multiple Listing Service. Second, it will mandate that buyers and buyer agents must have a written agreement that clearly states the agent’s compensation before the buyer views a property.

These two changes will likely impact both sellers and buyers in negotiating broker commissions, but buyers will most likely feel the impact due to the obligation for the buyer to pay a buyer broker’s commission. The buyer needs to understand how to structure a real estate transaction that best suits their needs in dealing with how the commission is paid.

“We predict a dramatic reduction in commissions across the board in the coming months for real estate transactions,” said Kevin Hopkins, Owner/Broker, 395 Realty, Overland Park, Kansas, who has more than four decades of professional business experience and expertise. “At 395 Realty, we see the ability to negotiate these charges as solid wins for homeowners and buyers by enabling them to keep more money in their pockets. Our business model has always offered low flat-rate charges or adding our services a la carte, and we know the benefits that sellers and buyers can reap from having more choices.

“395 Realty has been offering negotiated commissions for years,” he continued. Kevin and Greg Shahan, with decades of combined real estate experience, founded 395 Realty and were one of the first real estate firms to offer a full-service flat-fee model or negotiated commission, transforming the selling and buying process for their clients. Kevin was the first Realtor in Kansas City to be a buyer’s agent in 1986 when it was introduced. “This is truly a move to advocate for the consumer,” he affirmed. “Now, on a national level, commissions are being restructured, as this settlement represents a significant shift in the real estate landscape and reshapes industry practices that both the buyers and sellers will need to adapt to.”

395 Realty has offered a buyer program on a flat fee or a la carte basis since the company’s inception. “Our buyer service starts at $2,995; our Full-Service Listing is also $2,995. The Basic Listing, only $995, still provides a high level of service but does require the seller to assume some of the duties,” Kevin stated. “The Flat-Fee service option does not mean any difference in the level of service; it’s simply a different fee structure for the person looking to save money.”

For those considering selling or buying a home, now is the time to learn how this change can save thousands of dollars in commissions. 395 Realty’s knowledgeable and experienced staff is here to guide you through this critical, money-saving decision-making process. Let the agents at 395 Realty provide substantial services to help you keep your money in your pocket.