1: Can a seller or a listing broker offer to pay a bonus to any agent who sells the property?

A: Salespersons can only collect compensation in the name of the broker with whom they are licensed. Therefore, any bonus has to be paid to the selling agent’s broker. It is then up to the broker to pay their sales agent.

2: Can I rebate part of my commission to the buyer or seller, or is that splitting a fee with an unlicensed person?

A: Although Ohio license law does prohibit splitting commission or paying fees to an unlicensed person, the Ohio Division of Real Estate and Professional Licensing does not consider the rebating of a commission to a party of the transaction to constitute such an illegal payment. This is because the buyer or seller was not engaging in conduct that requires a real estate license. Therefore, such a rebate would be permissible. It should be noted that if this rebate were offered to induce the buyer or seller to enter into a purchase contract, Ohio license law would require that this rebate be disclosed in the purchase contract.