House Bill 1358: Disclose Amounts Payable To Real Estate Brokers

We are happy to report that House Bill 17-1358, sponsored by Representative Rosenthal (D-Denver) died in the House Business Affairs and Labor Committee yesterday on a vote of 11-2. As expected, HB-17-1358 was viewed as highly unnecessary and, as a result, was killed in committee yesterday afternoon.  In fact, several committee members conveyed that they believe the free market should be allowed to work between flat-free and full service brokers/agents, and further, that government should not be asked to intervene on behalf of one company. The bill would have required a broker in a real estate transaction (e.g., buyer’s agent, seller’s agent, transaction-broker) disclose in writing for any sale or lease of real estate, either as part of the contract or otherwise their commission. Brokers would also have been required to disclose their fees or the basis for calculating their fees on all marketing materials relating to any specific property, including on-line multiple listing services.

CAR opposed this legislation and testified against the bill because it was initiated by one company to codify its own business model and improve its bottom line by recommending legislation that would force its business plan on an entire industry. HB-1358 is entirely unnecessary and does not provide any additional information to consumers that are not already available to them. Broker compensation and fees are already transparent to the appropriate consumers – the parties to the real estate transaction.

Fees are disclosed to all brokers through the MLS and among all parties and their brokers through their respective brokerage agreements. Further, a real estate commission is completely voluntary, negotiable and often varies depending on the type of transaction.

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