Canada’s leading real estate classifieds site, Realtor.ca, may soon be without listings from Montreal, if a revolt by Montreal brokers against the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), which runs Realtor.ca, goes through.

The brokers in Quebec’s largest city are frustrated by what they perceive as overly high expenses and membership dues charged by CREA on.

About 13 percent of Realtor.ca’s traffic comes from brokers in Quebec. Those brokers have their own local website called Centris, which is growing rapidly – usage was up more than 80 percent in August, year over year. But about 60 percent of Centris’ traffic comes from Realtor.ca. Either way you look at it, whether a divorce or temporary separation, the custody battle for Quebec’s brokers will be interesting.

Dominic St. Pierre, Quebec region director for Royal LePage, a competing real estate classified site, wondered where potential homebuyers would go without Realtor.ca. Quoted in an article in the Montreal Gazette, he asked. ”Will they go to Royal Lepage, or Remax, or Centris.ca? Or will they go to Kijiji, or Les Pacs?” referring to the two main free classified sites active in Quebec. Other possibilities include the for-sale-by-owner website ViaProprio which was launched by Quebecor Media in August, or the Power Corp-backed DuProprio.com.

In July, the Quebec Federation of Real Estate Boards said it would be leaving CREA after nearly two decades, after one of its member boards from Granby decided to quit the national association.

The Montreal board announced in November 2011 that it would leave CREA if its cost-cutting conditions weren’t met. It will make its final decision this month.

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