Welcome to your weekly source of real estate news, where we break down 3 big stories from this week’s real estate news.
This week we found out that 44% of people don’t want to go back to the office. Do you like working from home or the office?
In other news this week we’re covering:
- NAR vs DOJ
- The financial burden that keeps millennials from buying a home
- Compass getting into the Title Insurance game
DOJ Still Probing NAR for Potential Antitrust Allegations
Back in July, the DOJ backed out of a settlement with NAR regarding buyer commissions and the Clear Cooperation Policy rules instituted by NAR. However, days after withdrawing, the DOJ sent NAR a request for documents pertaining to the two rules. Now, NAR has submitted a petition to force the DOJ to comply with the previous arrangement.
In the petition, NAR stated that it only agreed to the settlement because the DOJ said they would close the investigations into the Clear Cooperation Policy and buyer commission rules. NAR wants the courts to force the DOJ to get rid of items that it deems “overly broad, unduly burdensome, and irrelevant” as a way to force the DOJ to comply with the initial deal.
The new request from the DOJ, however, covers more than the 2 rules: it also includes the rule of listing MLS and non-MLS listings separately and buyer steering based on the commission offered by listing brokers.
A spokesperson for the DOJ responded to an Inman inquiry and said their actions are a reflection of their commitments to investigate potential anti-competitive industry rules that cause consumer harm.
This is an ongoing battle between NAR and the DOJ and we do not know all of the details. Therefore, we cannot comment on the potential impact of this new attempt at an investigation by the DOJ.
Go to College or Buy a House?
Millennials are having a difficult time buying homes thanks to the student loans they picked up while in college. 60% of millennials say student loans have kept them from buying a home.
The choice is usually between getting married, having kids, growing their savings, saving for retirement or purchasing a home. All 5 require a decent investment by the individual, and half of the millennial respondents said they put off a major life decision due to their burdensome student loans.
With housing affordability getting worse, we could start to see more millennials opting to rent while they start families or get married. But there’s hope: NAR president Charlie Oppler said that the National Association of Realtors is working on policies that help keep the American dream of owning property alive.
This is important to know about your buyers. If they are dealing with student loans, this may provide you some context about their decision that you didn’t have before. You can help guide them to make the best decision possible based on their situation or connect them to resources that can help them with student loans.
Compass Takes Another Step Toward End-to-End Real Estate
Compass has now acquired three title and escrow companies this year. This time, in one of the largest US metros: North Texas. After this acquisition, Compass will have title and escrow services in California; Texas; Washington, D.C.; Maryland; Florida; and Washington State.
This is just another step for Compass in its time of expansion as they launch a mortgage brand and other services to bring end-to-end real estate capabilities to its agents.
Compass CEO Robert Reffkin told Inman that Compass pays attention to what their agents love, and that was LegacyTexas Title Co. (their newest acquisition).
This is another way that Compass is working toward profitability and moving the real estate industry forward. Their agents already use this company, so why not make it a part of their brand and expand the Compass reach? We will see if the deal passes regulatory approval, though. Since Compass has been snatching up other companies, there is a possibility that they will see some regulatory pushback.