- Judge denies REXâ€™s allegations of antitrust conspiracy againstÂ ZillowÂ and NAR
- ZillowÂ had to comply with NARâ€™sâ€œno comminglingâ€ rule regarding MLSâ€™s policy
REXÂ Filed Antitrust Lawsuit Against ZillowÂ and NARÂ in Marc
In its founding vision to drastically reduce real estate commissions, REXÂ filed an antitrust lawsuit against Zillow, TruliaÂ and the National Association of REALTORSÂ® (NAR)Â in March of this year.
Why?Â Because, according to REXâ€™sÂ complaint, under NARâ€™sÂ rules that are enforced by multiple listing services (MLSâ€™s), sellers must pay a buyer brokerâ€™s commissions.
REX, considered almost uniformly to be a discount broker by the industry as a whole though not by REX, argued that Zillow,now powered by an IDX feed, downsized its feeds to approximately 600 from the 1,000â€™s of listings it formerly included prior to the companyâ€™s commitment to an IDX feed.
Results of Zillowâ€™sÂ Shift to IDX
Now, Zillowâ€™s listings website includes listings from the MLS and also sends its â€œownâ€ listings (its agentsâ€™ listings, its iBuyerlistings) to members of the MLS.Â Now, non-agent listings are excluded on Zillowâ€™s mobile app as a default.Â Consumers using Zillowâ€™sÂ mobile app can, however, switch between agent and non-agent listings themselves.
And, by the way, this recent switch made by ZillowÂ renders the company in compliance with local MLS rules.
REXâ€™sÂ Complaint Alleged Lack of Competition
According to the complaint filed by REXÂ against Zillow, Trulia andNAR,Â REXÂ contended that â€œZillowâ€™sÂ recently implemented website changes make non-MLS listings accessible only via a recessed, obscured, and deceptive tab that consumers do not see, and even professional real estate agents find deceiving.â€
In addition, REXÂ contended, â€œThe result is that REXâ€™sÂ listings are losing significant traffic, severely impacting REXâ€™sÂ reputation, its ability to execute its innovative and disruptive business model, and driving consumers away from REX and back into the MLS regime, ensuring higher commissions that benefit NARâ€™s members.â€
Judge Ruled Against REX Last Week
Last week, a Seattle federal court judge, Thomas Zilly, ruled in favor of Zillow, TruliaÂ and NAR concluding that REXÂ had not proven â€œa likelihood of irreparable harmâ€ not did the defendants threaten REXâ€™sÂ existence.
The judge also contended via the ruling that the defendants did not violate antitrust and consumer protection regulations.
- Thanks to HousingWire and Inman.
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