BrokerageIndustry News

Does Internet lower real estate commissions?

Brokers, agents divided over impact of cyberspace

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Real estate brokers and salespeople are divided over whether the Internet is driving down real estate commissions, according to an informal survey of Inman News readers. The Internet is a scapegoat for other market factors that are driving down commissions, said one respondent, while another said consumers' Internet research is educating them to negotiate lower commissions with realty agents. In response to the question: "Is the Internet driving down real estate commissions?" about 38 percent of participants answered "Yes," an equal percentage answered "No" and 11 percent answered "Not sure." The remainder weighed in with specific comments on the issue. "Competition is driving down commissions. The Internet is just a good scapegoat," said one respondent. Another offered, "More owners are able to sell their property without the help of a broker because of the Internet. So, ultimately it drives down total commissions that would be paid." Survey respondents said discount brokers, ri...