CREA versus THE COMPETITION BUREAU - LET'S SETTLE!

I just finished looking at the web site propertywire.ca. They posted the release by CREA in advance of the voting on October 24. It generated a firestorm of comments by Realtors across Canada. I added my two cents worth and was scored by all as ‘thumbs down’. Never bashful, let me repeat my position. The proposed settlement means that the public will not have access to our MLS system and they will not be posting to realtor.ca. The changes in summary are very similar to what the U.S. (NAR) agreed to several years ago with their Government regulators. Brokerages can offer a menu of services to the public and are not bound to offer a full service program. I agree with CREA’s decision to settle and want to move forward. Most Realtors want to continue to fight the Competition Bureau and shut down realtor.ca. It shows a lack of knowledge on our part and a ‘head in the sand’ approach that you can fight change and do business the way it was done twenty years ago! These same Realtors also resisted putting listings on the Internet ten years ago. It makes you embarrassed to say you are a Realtor! There have been Discount Brokerages and For Sale by Owner Companies for as long as I have been in the brokerage business – and that’s a long time! Most have started out with great fanfare and have disappeared within a couple of years. Why? There was not enough demand for these services and the business models were uneconomic. Who knows if these new models will succeed? There is always a portion of any market that is ‘do it yourself’. My guess is that it is about 10% in the real estate market.

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