Industry News

Realtors concerned with kickback rules

NAR handouts focus on RESPA compliance, referral fees

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To show its concern over real estate professionals understanding how to comply with kickback regulations in the complex Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act, the National Association of Realtors has issued two white papers that explain in detail some of the guidelines. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development polices compliance of RESPA, which governs industry kickbacks and payoffs. The real estate industry in the last decade has pushed the limits of the law in order to capture revenues from affiliated businesses with lending and title companies. The NAR handouts focus on the law as it relates to such arrangements, which have become increasingly popular. One paper discusses how HUD determines whether a mortgage or title company is a sham company formed to illegally funnel compensation to those who refer business. Another paper advises realty agents and brokers on when they can receive a fee from mortgage companies without violating RESPA. HUD has made clear, a...