Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder at TopHap, Inc.
Hey, real estate agents, guess what? The world has gone virtual. Have you?
We were lulled into a complacent comfort that we would always be needed even as more technology flowed into the real estate market. But quietly, Zillow, Redfin, Opendoor and the like have been enabling buyers to do their own legwork online while the rise of iBuyers has begun to erode the role of the real estate agent further.
Buyers and sellers are increasingly realizing the only thing they need from a real estate agent is paperwork. Unless we start thinking differently, the world is going to wake up and realize that when they hire a real estate agent to draft a purchase and sale agreement on a $1 million transaction, they’re basically spending $50,000 on a fancy PDF. Real estate agents need to provide more than just a real estate license, but a strong brand that conveys knowledge, expertise and the invaluable intangibles.
Times Have Changed, And Real Estate Agents Can Too
Twenty years ago, a real estate agent took clients around to show them properties they had never seen before. Even for resourceful buyers who would search the real estate section and do their own drive-bys, the real estate agent was still their only ticket through the doorway. In the year 2020, not only can a buyer see all sides of the house, yard and neighborhood online, they can tap and zoom into any room they’d like and even plan where they’ll put the Christmas tree before stepping foot into the living room. By spreading their thumb and index finger, a buyer can see how well the floor-to-ceiling Carrera tile complements the rainfall showerhead. Now, the pandemic is solidifying these virtual behaviors.
So what can real estate agents do so that tablets don’t do to us what they’ve done to newspaper journalists? We must use technology to take market intelligence to the next level — and then incorporate our market expertise to show clients what the internet can’t.
Source: Forbes: Anton Danilovich – Forbes Councils Member, https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesrealestatecouncil/2020/07/20/can-ai-keep-real-estate-agents-relevant/#26a233026791