We’re continuing our talk of shift in the market with the innovation shift in real estate.
Bob Nelson, Eugene real estate investment broker
Marcia Edwards, Eugene residential real estate broker
Marcia Edwards: It’s been a long time in coming, but real estate is going to see an industry shift, a service model change.
Bob Nelson: Now, you say real estate, are we talking about real estate brokerage?
Marcia Edwards: Well, the whole model of service in real estate as an industry. That industry is going to have to shift because consumers have spoken, and there’s been an answer in response to their call for a different type of model.
Bob Nelson: Well, it’s interesting because everybody’s looking for an easier, simpler, less expensive way of doing things. As that happens, certainly the professional service that a broker would have, who is representing your personal interest, starts to go away and you’re on your own.
Marcia Edwards: Well, we want to talk about that a little bit because are realtor is going to be obsolete because of technology, is a valid question. Zillow right now gives you access to recent sales similar to yours to give you some pricing information, gives you a very robust way to look at homes you’re considering on purchase. They’re connecting homes to buyers. If you’re doing that already, what do you need the realtor for? Well, the next step would be to show the home, so they might have a click-it, view-it-now button, and then a buy-the- home, buy-it-now button, and so it could proceed and I expect that it will. So are the realtors obsolete?
Bob Nelson: Well, what’s interesting now is there’s a handful of real estate brokers that are paying Zillow a substantial amount of money per month to have the link, that if you do click on a property, you’re going to get a phone call directly from a broker who is a Zillow employee or a contract… I shouldn’t maybe say employee, somebody’s going to get mad at me and say, “No, they’re independent contractors,” whatever. You will get a phone call and they will take over as the broker who would work your interest.
Marcia Edwards: It’s interesting to me, consumers have to drive commerce, and what’s gone on is we have had a database that’s been a closed database for a long time, which has given us the advantage in the industry holding that out from the homeowners.
Bob Nelson: Yeah. If you want to see it, you got to use us, type of thing.
Marcia Edwards: Right. And so because of that, we’ve got resentment building with consumers. If they have an alternative, Zillow’s played very nicely with the industry to get a robust database. Now we’ve got a point where it could just jump, and we’re seeing some activity in that direction. What I would say is the consumers are going to drive the model. We just need to make sure you consumers know what you need from the realtors, to use them in an accurate way with the fee and service model that works for you.
Join Eugene, Oregon, real estate experts: Bob Nelson, Real Estate Investment Broker with Pacwest Real Estate Investments, and Marcia Edwards, Residential Real Estate Broker with Windermere Real Estate, daily at 5:30 on KPNW for the “Real Estate Today” radio show.