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President Russ Anderson on why you can't trust the headlines but you can trust our agents

Signing a Contract for a HouseEach Friday, Russ Anderson, the president and CEO of Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realty writes about luxury, trends, business and more in the advertising pages of the Mansion section of The Wall Street Journal. Below is his letter of March 22, 2024.




More news from the real estate world:


The sky is not falling.


Last Friday’s announcement by the National Association of REALTORS (NAR) about its lawsuit agreement related to broker commissions has set the media abuzz with speculation and misinformation.


Know this: The agreement does not mean the end of compensation for services rendered. It could mean that longtime commission models evolve into new models. It will mean that buyers and agents will enter into a written agreement at the beginning of their journey — just as sellers and agents always have — so that they understand exactly what services and value will be provided, and for how much. That is one change of several in the agreement, which is still subject to court approval, and something that both NAR and Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realty brokerage have long encouraged.


Here is something that will never change: A real estate agent provides a professional service that is worthy of fair compensation — as do your doctor, accountant and attorney. Our agents bring immeasurable value to their buyers and sellers, including negotiation skills, contract expertise, trusted resources, risk mitigation and future guidance far beyond a transaction. When you hire a professional agent, you are benefiting directly from their education, connections and experience.


This a moment of evolution. Name an industry that doesn’t change. I’ll wait. In the meantime, we’ll keep innovating at Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realty, as we have since 1960. Our agents focus on growth, goal-setting, professionalism and positivity, not sensational headlines. Frankly, they’re too busy helping the best clients in the world buy and sell properties — and achieve goals of their own.



Russ Anderson

President and CEO

Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realty


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