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Kaplan Launches Buyer Agency Professional Designation to Help Real Estate Agents Navigate Looming Major Changes to the Industry’s Business Model

Kaplan has launched a Buyer Agency Professional (BAP) designation to help buyer agents succeed as they face a drastically different real estate business model on the horizon. A landmark federal court ruling in October 2023 has resulted in the National Association of Realtors announcing on March 15, 2024 a settlement in the class action lawsuit, upending a system in place for generations and shifting the burden of how buyer agents get paid to buyer agents themselves. Now they’ll have to negotiate their commission with their clients, who will have to pay them directly, potentially causing significant early friction. For more than three decades, in most states, the business has worked like this: Seller agents and buyer agents split a commission based upon the final price of the home sale, pre-decided on and paid for by the seller. The home purchaser generally has never had to even think about this part of the process…until now.

Among the skills that real estate professionals will learn in the eight-hour, live online course:

  • Buyer Agency and Responsibilities: Learn the responsibilities of a buyer agent.
  • Unique Value Proposition: Create a compelling buyer agent value proposition that fits your style and demonstrates your value to potential buyers.
  • Professional Fees: Find out the steps to secure your professional fees, including who can and can’t pay you.
  • Service Menu Approach: Create a menu of services that allow you to deliver the services the buyer needs.
  • Professional Service Agreement: Learn what this is, how to use it, and when to use this type of written agreement.

“On a scale of 1-10, the National Association of Realtors’ decision to change how commissions are secured is a 10. This is by far the biggest change to hit the real estate industry in more than 30 years, and has added a new dimension of uncertainty among agents on how they are going to secure their fees when representing buyers. That’s not good for them, their clients, or the market. The Buyer Agency Professional (BAP) designation not only educates agents on the best processes and tactics to use when securing their fees, but also teaches them how to compete and market their services to get ahead on this significantly different landscape,” said Toby Schifsky, vice president of real estate education, Kaplan. “We also believe that potential buyers are going to look to hire agents who have this designation, as it demonstrates both their command of the new buyer representative/agency model and commitment to excellence.”

Upon successful completion, agents will receive their BAP designation and a digital badge to use in their marketing efforts.

The course launch comes amid a potential rebound in the real estate market, with sales of previously owned homes on the rise in January and mortgage rates creeping down. The increase in sales helped boost home prices compared with a year earlier for the seventh consecutive month. And the national median sales price rose 5.1 percent from January last year to $379,100 — the highest median sales price for January on records going back to 1999.

The Buyer Agency Professional (BAP) course is now open for enrollment.

About Kaplan

Kaplan, Inc. is a global educational services company that helps individuals and institutions advance their goals in an ever-changing world. Our broad portfolio of solutions help students and professionals further their education and careers, universities and educational institutions attract and support students, and businesses maximize employee recruitment, retainment, and development. Stanley Kaplan founded our company in 1938 with a mission to expand educational opportunities for students of all backgrounds. Today, our thousands of employees working in 27 countries continue Stanley’s mission as they serve about 1.2 million students and professionals, 15,000 corporate clients, and 3,300 schools, school districts, colleges, and universities worldwide. Kaplan is a subsidiary of the Graham Holdings Company (NYSE: GHC). Learn more at

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Kaplan has launched a Buyer Agency Professional (BAP) designation to help buyer agents succeed as they face a drastically different real estate business model on the horizon.


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