Technology will continue to provide more access to information, and estate agents need to continually be more responsive with clients. As technology takes away barriers to information, and streamlines the home buying process, the real issue is responsiveness and service.
At the turn of the century (2000), the real estate information and records used to be buried in file folders. Estate agents spent a lot of time doing information gathering. It put real estate sellers and buyers in a much different place than they are today, able to access detailed property records on their smartphones within minutes. Agents are freed up to help get the deals done; acting as agent, negotiator, price setter, and a community resource – a local market expert and service provider.
Success is more about service, and new innovations will only make responsiveness more important.
Clients today are much more knowledgeable and do online research, know what they’re looking for, and know the neighbourhood. The key is for agents to be more responsive, understand better what the client wants, and justify their role in the process. The evolving need is to better leverage technology to become responsive, active experts for the clients.
While it’s one thing to go online and get information and data, people realize they can gain the knowledge, but they aren’t necessarily fluent in interpreting it.
While technology is disrupting numerous industries the idea of making a massive, infrequent, and consequential purchase such as buying a home without the help of a trained agent still scares many buyers. The percentage of people using real estate agents is increasing. NAR data has shown that 87% of buyers purchased their home through a real estate agent or broker. An increased from 69 percent in 2001. (Compare the 2012 REALTOR® Technology Survey to your current market.)
Realtor Sue Eller‘s promotion video The Vanishing Realtorasaur highlights the evolution and mocks the Estate Agents reluctant to adapt.
Technology is changing how that relationship works, not taking the human element out of real estate.