BIRCH Properties Responds to NAR Lawsuit Settlement | Blog

BIRCH Properties Responds to NAR Lawsuit Settlement | Blog


Statement re. #breakingnews concerning the NAR | DOJ agreement

BIRCH Properties is privileged to be your agency of choice – whether it is buying, or selling, a home.  As the details of the agreement announced Friday, March 15, between NAR (the National Association of Realtors®) and the DOJ were shared, know that we have been preparing for this shift for months and stand ready to serve both our seller and buyer clients with the same smarts, diligence and deep care we bring to the table every day.

It's natural that there will be some initial confusion around what the agreement means for you, sellers and buyers of homes. Transparency should always and will continue to come first. The changes anticipated must still be approved and changes are likely to go into effect sometime in July of 2024.

If you are selling a home, as always, you have the right to negotiate commission with your agent and agency. The agreement effectively separates commission paid by sellers of homes and buyers of homes. Buyers will now work with a buyer agent on an agreed upon commission basis. And sellers will work with their listing agent similarly, on an agreed upon commission. Negotiations around a purchase will now have an added layer of potentially negotiable terms.

Each market, and state regulations differ to varying degrees. This is specifically why it is essential to work with deeply knowledgeable and adept agents who know their markets, are savvy and forward-looking about new regulations and guidelines and are adept and successful negotiators; whether you are buying or selling.

Now for the nitty-gritty:

The agreement that NAR presented for this settlement PRESERVES the CHOICE for the consumer to compensate buyers’ agents. Compensation continues to be negotiable and should always be negotiated between agents and the consumers they serve.

The implication for home buyers and sellers is that once the new rule goes into effect, listing brokers and sellers will be allowed to continue to offer compensation for buyer broker services – they simply cannot communicate the offer via the MLS (multiple listing service.) Sellers may communicate their concessions, such as buyer closing costs, on the MLS, provided they are not conditional on the use of, or payment to, a buyer broker.

The settlement states that MLS participants working with buyers must enter into a written representation agreement. This will take the form of a buyer agency agreement and your agent will review this with buyers with great care.

Buyer agents are essential representation particularly in non-disclosure states like Massachusetts. At BIRCH our team of buyer agents are deeply knowledgeable about all aspects of your transaction and serve as your guide and advisor through every twist and turn of a transaction and stand ready, always, with the resources you need as you make a life-changing purchase.

Please contact us with any questions you may have. We are happy to discuss!

Our team at BIRCH Properties is always excited about change which will serve our clients’ path forward and we are READY!

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Selina Lamb is a study in contrasts — analytical yet creative, fun yet serious-minded, easygoing yet a fierce marketer and negotiator. She synthesizes years of experience in Berkshires' real estate; a liberal arts education from Williams College; a successful career at top U.S. fashion houses; and experience founding a nationally recognized landscape design firm into a real estate consultancy that centers around client well-being. Repeats and referrals comprise 98% of her business, and review after review mentions her market knowledge, vast network, warm sense of humor, and presence in her clients’ lives long after the deal has closed.
As a real estate partner, Selina aims to make people feel at home during each moment of the transaction, whether they’re seeking residential, commercial, or land development opportunities. A longtime Berkshires resident, she works tirelessly to plug her buyers into the community, ensuring they have every professional and resource they need to create fulfilling lives here. In addition, she leverages her expansive global network and marketing expertise to get her sellers’ properties maximum views, visits, and offers. Her future-forward service features tech, design, analysis, and humanity in equal measure — making it highly personalized and undeniably modern.
Selina’s unique approach comes from the circuitous path that brought her to real estate and back to the Berkshires. After graduating from Williams, Selina held executive roles for the likes of Tommy Hilfiger, J. Crew, and Polo Ralph Lauren. During that time, she would escape to her Berkshire house on weekends to find delight in her garden, which inspired her to earn a graduate degree in site planning and landscape design. She eventually let go of her New York City address permanently and founded her acclaimed landscape design firm, which has been featured by Architectural Digest, Elle Decor, and HGTV.
Selina’s design experience makes her an expert in envisioning clear and practicable solutions for presenting properties to their very best advantage, from staging to photography and beyond. For buyers and sellers, her wide breadth of knowledge of local regulations and permitting processes make her an invaluable resource.
Beyond real estate, Selina serves on the Williams College Parents Fund Committee and co-chaired the Emma Willard School Parents Fund Committee. In addition to gardening, she enjoys painting, skiing, and playing tennis.


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