Columbia Real Estate Suit Goes on Despite National Settlement


Columbia real estate suit goes on despite national settlement

May 28, 2008

By Kristy Eppley Rupon – The State

A settlement reached between the U.S. Department of Justice and the National Association of Realtors does not affect a lawsuit against the Columbia-area Consolidated Multiple Listing Service filed this month.

The national association has agreed to allow Internet-based residential real estate brokers access to home listings kept by affiliated listing services around the country, which could lower commission costs for home sellers.

The local listing service is one of just two in South Carolina that is not affiliated with the Realtors association. The other is in Hilton Head, which settled a lawsuit with the Justice Department earlier this year.

The lawsuit against the Columbia organization — which is run by brokers from the area’s dominant firms — accuses the group of restricting access to listings by low-cost and Internet-based brokers.

Nick Kremydas, chief executive of the S.C. Realtors trade group, said the settlement with the national organization could lead to a quicker resolution of the local suit.


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