Industry News

Federal agencies seeking comments on real estate competition

Dozens of public remarks are posted online

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The U.S. Justice Department and Federal Trade Commission are accepting public comments through Nov. 28 relating to a workshop on real estate competition that was held last week in Washington, D.C. The Federal Trade Commission and Justice Department already have posted dozens of public comments, which range from complimentary to critical of real estate industry practices. The workshop was particularly timely given a spate of activity by both federal agencies this year on real estate-related issues – most notably the Justice Department's filing of a lawsuit against the National Association of Realtors trade group in September over the association's policy for the online display and sharing of property listings among brokers. The Justice Department alleges that the group's property listings policy is overly restrictive. Federal agencies also have stepped up efforts to challenge statewide bans on rebates to real estate consumers and to oppose state laws and regulations that seek to...