“We believe this is a significant victory for real estate brokers, but we don’t think it’s over yet. There are many more battles,” he wrote. “This is the first domino to fall, but the National Association of Realtors is still on the hook.”
Brokers who chose to settle ahead of trial said they were happy with their decision.
“The settlement relieves our company, affiliated agents and owners of liability related to these claims. The jury’s verdict, while disappointing, does not change our settlement,” Anywhere Real Estate spokesman Trey Charton said in an emailed statement.
The losers of previous court battles with the NAR celebrated.
Jack Ryan, chief executive of REX Real Estate, which lost an antitrust lawsuit against NAR, Zillow and Trulia in August, has been outspoken about setting commissions low. In a text message on Tuesday, he hailed the ruling as “very good news for Americans.”
If commissions were cut, “the price of every home would fall, jobs and wages would rise, tax revenues would increase, and people could more easily move to better and more fulfilling jobs,” he wrote.
Other cases are now pending. Minutes after Tuesday’s ruling, the plaintiffs’ attorneys filed another class-action lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Missouri. The suit, filed on behalf of three new home sellers, also claims that the practice of home sellers paying sales commissions to buyers’ agents violates the Sherman Antitrust Act. It names NAR as a defendant and several other major brokerages, including Compass, eXp World Holdings, Redfin and Douglas Elliman.