Zillow Seeks Dismissal Of Upstart Brokerage’s Antitrust Suit
May 12, 2021
Discount brokerage REX “has fabricated a massive industry-wide conspiracy,” according to Seattle-based real estate heavyweight Zillow Group Inc., in an April 30 filing. Zillow is seeking dismissal of a lawsuit filed by Austin, Texas-based REX, accusing Zillow and the National Association of Realtors of anti-competitive behavior.
In that lawsuit, filed in federal court in the Western District of Washington at Seattle, Rex asserts that its “innovative and competitive model is now threatened by the concerted action of the NAR and Zillow, along with their MLS [Multiple Listing Services] affiliates. Zillow recently joined NAR affiliated MLSs and adopted their associational rules to conceal all non-MLS listings on Zillow’s heavily trafficked websites.” Specific allegations include that a revamped Zillow website unfairly buries REX listings behind a tab labeled “other listings.”
This dispute, explained the Seattle Times in an article written shortly after Rex filed its lawsuit in March, “stems from Zillow’s recent move to go beyond listing homes for sale and create a brokerage to hire agents itself.”
The National Association of Realtors, co-defendant in the lawsuit, said in a statement issued in response to REX’s April filing that REX cannot “contort antitrust laws to shift responsibility for its own failure to gain traction in the marketplace.”
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