How “Stranger Things” shows the impact of technology on the Real Estate industry
Like most of us that just finished watching season 3 of “Stranger Things” on Netflix, I became nostalgic with all of the 80’s pop culture references. I can remember only being able to communicate with my friends through a “walk-talkie” or having to share one landline phone for the whole family! One of my first cell phone plans did not include “free nights and week-ends” and could easily reach $500.00+ per month if I didn’t monitor my time carefully or decided to “roam” outside of my providers network. Thankfully, technology has come a long way in the last 30+ years and revolutionized the way many industries operate to provide consumers with much better options and lower fees. However, the real estate brokerage model that operates in most major cities of the United States has not embraced new technology in a manner that would provide an optimal combination of increased benefits and lower costs. Compared to thirty years ago , consumers now have access to almost all of the relevant data when it comes to buying or selling a home (without even speaking to a realtor). Consumers are finding their own homes online and doing their own neighborhood research, so the value of a broker being the arbiter of information has vanished. If the level of service has changed, why does the brokerage model still dictate a realtor earns a fixed percentage of a home’s value for assisting a buyer or seller in a transaction, regardless of actual services performed or value of the home? As one of the largest industries in the world, can we really not come up with a more efficient and cost effective way to buy and sell homes or quantify a real estate broker’s value based on actual services received and/or time worked? Technology has also enabled the broker to write an offer, counteroffer, and manage almost every aspect of the transaction online through electronic signatures. If a real estate broker’s job now requires much less labor and proprietary information, how do we calculate the value of their service? Regardless of how familiar a buyer is with a specific area, they will more than likely search multiple real estate websites and reputable third party services to learn about school districts and neighborhoods, as opposed to relying on the opinion of one broker. If you know where you want to live and know how to search for homes online, please allow one of the Hausmarkt licensed brokers to assist you with your next home purchase and save 1% of the home’s price. Yes, this is a lot of money and you don’t need a fancy calculator or slider widget to figure out how much you will save. Find your next property and enter the Zip Code, property MLS ID, or address you would like to purchase and we look forward to helping. If you are selling a home, learn how you can list and sell for FREE on Hausmarkt.