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Confederation of Real Estate Brokers’ Association of India v. Magicbricks.com and ors. - (Competition Commission of India) (03 May 2016)

“No Brokerage Policy” not anti-competitive conduct

MRTP/ Competition Laws

The Commission dismissed a complaint by the Confederation of Real Estate Brokers’ Association of India against the “No Brokerage Policy” advertised on popular online real estate aggregators.

The Association claimed the same amounted to unfair and discriminatory conditions on traditional real estate brokers whose business relied on commission. Online portals were also alleged to have partaken in monopolistic acts on the strength of the clause, and also advertised the same by physical media, to undercut traditional brokers.

The Commission, however, found the market to be easily accessible, with its regulatory lack. It opined Real estate portals to not be dominant in the market, and rejected figures obtained from Alexa.com, an online traffic monitoring service, for poviding only a one-sided picture of the market. Moreover, none of the websites had been ranked higher than 100, with wide disparities existing between the online real estate portals also.

Traditional brokerage fees are estimated to hover around 2 per cent of the sale/purchase value of the property. The brokerage profession also does not require licensing, registration, nor does it mandate any qualification or investment. Instead it relies on networking – the word of mouth kind – and local knowledge.


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