Meow! The Copycats Are On The Prowl: The Download

Key Takeaways:

– The old way of doing business is over and it’s time to adapt to new market challenges and opportunities.
– There has been a significant increase in lawsuits in the real estate industry, with new suits being filed every week.
– The goal of these lawsuits is unclear, but it may be to drive the National Association of Realtors (NAR) out of existence or to combine multiple lawsuits into a super-suit.
– A recent lawsuit in California called Latham takes aim at specific MetroList rules that affect buyer broker commissions.
– The constant stream of lawsuits, along with a weak market, is causing real estate professionals to leave the industry or reevaluate their options.
– Inman Contributors Carl Medford and Darryl Davis have created guides to help real estate professionals navigate these challenges and avoid distractions.
– The guides include strategies to avoid being part of the agent exodus, tips for skill development, and talking points for commission conversations with sellers.

inman:

The verdict is in — the old way of doing business is over. Join us at Inman Connect New York Jan. 23-25, when together we’ll conquer today’s market challenges and prepare for tomorrow’s opportunities. Defy the market and bet big on your future.

Each week on The Download, Inman’s Christy Murdock takes a deeper look at the top-read stories of the week to give you what you’ll need to meet Monday head-on. This week: Lawsuit after lawsuit dropped this week, with no end in sight. How will it affect your future?

On the day the jury returned a $5 billion-plus in the Sitzer | Burnett trial, plaintiffs’ attorney Michael Ketchmark filed what would become the first of the follow-up lawsuits. Since then, it seems that every week has seen new suits filed, and this week saw a bumper crop.

EXTRA: Commission lawsuits are piling up. Keep track of them all right here

The brand-newest (at the time of this writing) is a California lawsuit called Latham, brought by a company that’s owned by a Sacramento law firm. It takes aim at a few specific MetroList rules that force sellers to pay buyer broker commissions and prevent buyers from reducing their brokers’ commissions.

In light of so much litigation, the question becomes: What are new plaintiffs hoping to gain at this point? Is the goal to drive NAR out of existence, or will we see a new super-suit that combines some of these copycats?

On Monday, Jan. 15, Las Vegas resident Nathaniel Whaley filed a complaint seeking class-action status on behalf of anyone who, from Jan. 15, 2018 through the present, paid a broker commission in connection with the sale of residential real estate listed on the Northern Nevada Regional MLS; Elko County MLS; Incline Village MLS; and Mesquite MREA MLS.

According to his complaint, Whaley sold a home in the Las Vegas metro area in April 2022 for $805,000, paying a total broker commission of 5 percent or $40,250. Three percent went to the buyer broker.

The psychological and emotional weight of this seemingly never-ending onslaught of lawsuits, coupled with a weak 2023 market hampered by high interest rates and low inventory, is taking its toll on real estate professionals, with the result that many are leaving the industry — or at least weighing their options.

For those who are determined to hang in there, it’s a time to reevaluate business as usual and learn how to implement best practices. Clients (and potential clients) have questions. You have to stay informed. You have to know how to answer their questions with clarity while also communicating your own value.

Fortunately, Inman Contributors Carl Medford and Darryl Davis have created some must-read guides to help you avoid the agent exodus and get back down to business while avoiding the distractions caused by copycat lawsuit after copycat lawsuit.

10 things to do right now, so you’re not in the next wave of agent exits

Team leader Carl Medford and his regional mastermind developed these 10 strategies to help you return to the fundamentals and take on the challenges and opportunities 2024 has in store.

EXTRA: California commission lawsuit filed against NAR and 35 other entities

Get your mind(set) right to avoid the fate of 49% of real estate pros

Nearly half of real estate agents sold next-to-nothing last year, writes mega-team leader Carl Medford. He shares strategies to help you turn disappointment into success in 2024.

EXTRA: Court says $200B commission suit against NAR must go forward

9 must-do moves to dodge the agent exodus

If you want to be a top-performing agent in 2024 — one who stays for the long haul — prioritize skill development to best adapt to the changing market, coach Darryl Davis writes.

EXTRA: Illinois’ 3rd commission suit names @properties, champions buyers

7 perks of seller-paid commission to share with homeowners

Transparency and communication are more important than ever before. Darryl Davis offers essential talking points for your next commission conversation with sellers.

EXTRA: Latest homeseller suits in Arizona, New York target commission rules


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Property Chomp's Take:

The real estate industry is facing a wave of lawsuits that show no signs of slowing down. Lawsuit after lawsuit has been dropped, with no end in sight. These lawsuits are not only impacting the market but also the emotional and psychological well-being of real estate professionals.

One of the most recent lawsuits is the California lawsuit called Latham. This lawsuit takes aim at specific MetroList rules that force sellers to pay buyer broker commissions and prevent buyers from reducing their brokers' commissions. With so many lawsuits being filed, it begs the question of what the plaintiffs hope to gain. Is the goal to drive the National Association of Realtors (NAR) out of existence or will there be a new super-suit that combines some of these copycats?

In addition to the legal challenges, the weak 2023 market, characterized by high interest rates and low inventory, is also taking a toll on real estate professionals. Many are leaving the industry or contemplating their options. However, for those who are determined to stay, it is crucial to reevaluate business practices and implement best practices.

Clients and potential clients have questions, and it is essential for real estate professionals to stay informed and be able to answer those questions with clarity while also communicating their own value. Inman contributors Carl Medford and Darryl Davis have created some must-read guides to help navigate these challenges and avoid distractions caused by the ongoing lawsuits.

Medford and his regional mastermind have developed 10 strategies to help real estate professionals return to the fundamentals and take on the challenges and opportunities that 2024 has in store. These strategies include prioritizing skill development, staying informed about the changing market, and finding ways to communicate value to clients.

Davis emphasizes the importance of mindset and turning disappointment into success. Nearly half of real estate agents sold next-to-nothing last year, and it is crucial to avoid becoming part of that statistic. Davis offers strategies to help real estate professionals get their mindsets right and thrive in 2024.

It is also important to develop essential talking points to have transparent and effective conversations with sellers about commission. Davis provides seven perks of seller-paid commission that can be shared with homeowners to communicate the value of these commissions.

The real estate industry is facing numerous challenges, from ongoing lawsuits to a weak market. However, by implementing strategies and staying informed, real estate professionals can navigate these challenges and continue to thrive in the industry. It is crucial to reevaluate business practices, communicate value to clients, and prioritize skill development. By doing so, real estate professionals can defy the market and bet big on their future.

Inman Connect New York, taking place from January 23-25, offers an opportunity for real estate professionals to come together, conquer market challenges, and prepare for future opportunities. It is an event where industry experts share insights and strategies to help navigate these challenging times. By attending this event, real estate professionals can gain valuable knowledge and connections that will help them succeed in the ever-evolving real estate market.

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