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Real estate broker commissions can now be part of Washington home listings

The rule changes aim to increase transparency and flexibility for consumers and more than 30,000 real estate brokers.

KIRKLAND, Wash. — Real estate firms are now allowed to publish the amount of commission the seller is offering to the broker on the firms’ public websites. Sellers are also not required to offer their broker a commission.

The Northwest Multiple Listing Service made changes to its rules in July that went into effect Tuesday.

The rules aim to provide more transparency for consumers in terms of their broker’s compensation.

“Consumers want greater transparency and flexibility in the home buying and selling process,” NWMLS CEO Tom Hurdelbrink said in a statement. “We believe these changes encourage member real estate firms to continue to innovate and evolve their business models to better serve consumers.”

Commission can now be listed along with other public facts about a home, such as price, square footage, or other property information.

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Along with publishing the amount of commission, sellers are no longer required to offer a commission to the broker when listing a property for sale. However, if there is no commission offered, the buyer and the buyer’s broker can negotiate the compensation as a part of the offer to purchase.

This change allows for more flexibility for both sellers and buyers.

“Transparency in real estate transactions benefits everyone,” said Jason Wall, a Lake & Company agent and NWMLS Board member.

Brokers hope these updated rules will assure both consumers and agents that Seattle’s real estate market open for competition in a fair marketplace.

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