Veterans Affairs Pauses Buyer Agent Payment Ban Temporarily

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) plans to temporarily lift its ban on buyers directly paying for professional real estate representation until a formal rulemaking process is initiated, a VA official announced at a Mortgage Bankers Association conference in New York.

Key Points:

  • Announcement Details:
    • VA Deputy Director of Policy Michelle Corridon mentioned the change.
    • Not an official announcement, but received positively by the real estate industry.
  • Current Policy and Challenges:
    • VA’s home loan guaranty is the only program prohibiting buyer-paid representation.
    • Veteran buyers face limited options if listing brokers offer no compensation to buyer brokers.
  • Advocacy Efforts:
    • National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) launched an advocacy campaign.
    • Efforts included meetings with VA officials, engaging lawmakers, and rallying industry partners.
    • Shannon McGahn, NAR’s chief advocacy officer, emphasized the importance of this change for veteran homebuyers.
  • Policy Complications:
    • VA policy states veteran buyers using VA loans cannot be charged a brokerage fee.
    • NAR’s proposed settlement changes require written agreements and prohibit listing brokers from offering MLS compensation.
  • NAR’s Letter to VA:
    • Submitted in late March, urging policy change to maintain veteran access to VA loans.
    • Highlighted disadvantages for VA buyers when no seller compensation is offered.
    • Emphasized the VA home loan guaranty as a crucial tool for veteran homeownership.

NAR’s advocacy underscores the need for VA buyers to have equal opportunities in the housing market, ensuring they can access professional representation and achieve the American Dream of homeownership.

 

Source: REALTOR® Magazine