The Canadian Real Estate Association is set to vote today on proposed changes to the rules governing use of the MLS after pressure from the Competition Bureau.
The rule change could remove the requirement that a realtor act as agent for the seller “throughout the entire time” of a listing contract, making it possible for agents to post property information through the MLS without providing more service.
..meaning that a realtor would be able to charge a flat rate for simply listing a property and not be involved in the rest of the sale.
UPDATE: The CREA has voted for the new changes and the Competition Bureau has said it’s not enough:
“There is nothing in these proposals that we haven’t seen before and they do not solve the problem,” said Melanie Aitken, Commissioner of Competition. “They are a step in the wrong direction. These amendments amount to a blank cheque allowing CREA and its members to create rules that could have even greater anti-competitive consequences.”
The two sides have been battling over access to the Multiple Listing Service system, which is owned in Canada by CREA and responsible for about 90 per cent of residential property sales.
The watchdog says the association’s new measures, which ultimately give consumers some ability to decide how much they use a Realtor on a deal and allow consumers to conduct parts of a transaction without using a Realtor, do not go far enough.