Sitzer-Burnett Trial Wraps Up This Week—What’s Ahead?

by | Oct 31, 2023 | Buyer Commissions | 0 comments


This week the Burnett Sitzer trial wraps up. The litigation seeks damages because sellers were forced to pay a commission to buyer’s agents, even though those agents were representing the best interests of the buyer, not the sellers. It also alleges that NAR and the major firms engaged in a conspiracy to keep commissions artificially high.

A lot of the big names in the industry have testified. It remains to be seen how the jury decides. Anywhere and RE/MAX have already settled. What does seem to be guaranteed is that the losing side will appeal, so it may be a very long time before this is finally resolved.

Nevertheless, due to Anywhere and RE/MAX settlements and the changes they will necessitate (buyer’s agents having to negotiate their own commissions with their buyer or the seller) plus NAR deciding that you can post a “zero” percent commission to the buyer and still have your listing appear in the MLS, the number one thing you need to do over the holidays is to sign up for a course on how to become a buyer’s agent where you will negotiate your commission with your buyer. The best place to obtain this information is through your local or state realtor association.

What’s of even greater concern, however, is that the Moerhl suit that goes to trial in early 2024. Burnett Spitzer was limited to Missouri. Moerhl covers the entire country.

The bottom line is that agents who have taken the time to acquire the skills they need to be effective negotiators and understand the strategies to succeed in today’s market, will thrive in what’s ahead. I always had my very best years in down markets because they’re skills based. You can too—we’ll be here to help.


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