Real estate has been transformed from being an industrial society into a digital information age society, and now functioning in a state which is known as a "Perfect Storm." A number of factors that have contributed to this concept.
Today consumers have online access to almost everything they need. While more and more data is being permanently transitioned to the internet, so have the expectations of real estate consumers.
Technology is a tremendous influence on the major shift in overall expectations by consumers'.
Just think about it: As little as five years ago when a prospective home buyer started their home-hunting search, he or she then would typically start this often lengthy ordeal by putting in a
call to a real estate agent, imparting all of the pertinent information about the type of home and area they desired to live in (i.e., bedrooms, baths, home style, etc.). The real estate agent would then make use of the tools they had hand,
primarily the MLS, and assemble a personal presentation which highlighted various homes for sale.
However, with the technologically savvy consumers of today, this is dated process is now an exception and it no longer applies very much. Thanks to the web, prospective homebuyers can go to Google or search for a wide array of real estate agent websites to look at photo galleries,
virtual home tours and specific information about potential properties. Consumers can also obtain the estimated value of a property or pull up property comparison in just a few minutes as opposed to what took days in the past.
This digital approach has not only streamlined the home-hunting process, however it also has
given homebuyers a feeling of empowerment. It can provide homebuyers with confidence that they can now all of the search process by themselves, which they control and search at their own time frame. Forced to respond to this new phenomenon of digital real estate, agents and brokers have become more virtual and mobile. All of this is resulting, in improved transaction experience which is more consistent with client expectations.
Another factor contributing to this ‘Perfect Storm’ is readily apparent when viewing at the
present economic fix of the housing industry, and the way it has placed added pressure on the real estate business. Due to this downward pressure during recent years, real estate agents have been required to adjust their business models and adapt to these changes, which has included scaling down staff members and reducing large office spaces, ads being posted on all street corners, mammoth billboards and city bus benches, and other ‘traditional’ ways of promoting real estate services.
All of this has resulted in an entirely new kind of business models which are much more streamlined, with greater cost-effectiveness and leaner. Agents are now associating with brokerages that have aligned with those resources which meet and accomplish consumer expectations. Additionally, just about everything within the process between agent and customer now happens online or on a mobile device. In fact, most interactions in real estate transactions today are not by physical meetings any longer, but through communications using some sort of digital device.
Another contribution to a ‘Perfect Storm’ idea is the changing overall statistical characteristics of buyers and with sellers in the marketplace we live in today. Real estate buyers and seller of today are
considerably younger than they have been in the past. This is a consequence of the downward pressure of home prices, in combination with the lack of capabilities to sell homes. Additionally, incentives, like low interest rates which further serve to be a magnet for first-time homebuyers, along with increased rental activity, all serve to support this line of thinking.
Alongside a willingness to acclimatize to this new digital world for earning potential, there are a wide variety of advanced technological tools on hand to help the real estate professionals of today in adjusting to the ‘Perfect Storm.’
Using the Internet along with simple-to-use software,
brokers and agents can generate a virtual document hub which connects customers and documents using real-time. This streamlined approach does away with several traditional processing barriers (often called chokepoints), particularly when people are located in different areas.
These money-saving, ‘add water and simply stir’ real estate solutions let real estate agents accomplish even more using less effort. Technology opportunities in the world of real estate today can help provide a service level to both the buyer and seller parallel to everything being done online in the digital world of today, much like online banking, buying a book on Amazon, buying stocks, setting up appointments and the list goes on.
Without embracing the valuable digital solutions we have today, real estate agents would still continue to fax documents to and fro to buyers, or go so far as to drive over to the homes of their clients’ providing an experience that inconsistent with consumer’ expectations. This is an old fashioned approach along with being totally unnecessary.
By doing a quick, simple click employing user-friendly technological solutions, real estate agents can have the ability to efficiently and securely provide customers with links to retrieve important documents needing their review, negotiated or signed, anytime of the day or the night, from across the nation, or across town, and using any electronic communication device. This is referred to as negotiating online pretty much the same as would be sitting with all parties at conference table.
Real Estate Agents today can no longer not afford to benefit from the numerous comprehensive solutions on hand in helping to produce an online working seamless setting. Not only do digital tools help in providing comprehensive answers to the demands of efficiency, security, plus overhead costs in the real estate world of today, but they help in creating 21st century answers for 21st century demands.
Technology and Real Estate Communications
Over the decades, the ability to have clients instantly trust and like us was a necessary characteristic of a real estate
professional. In turn this, required us to be personable, knowledgeable and available.
However, as technology was introduced to the real estate business the once-treasured relationship between client and agent has changed. all of a Sudden, loyalty is rare, as clients now have the ablility to locate homes by themselves. They contact agents based upon availability or simply because the agent represents the seller of property the client has an interest in. Phone calls have dispersed into text messages, therefore clients now tend to interact less with an agent as a person and more with the agent's website
This shift in society has caused numerous agents to flee from technology. They feel that online communication, deprives clients of a necessary relationship to successfully complete a sale. However, this is true, and as an industry, agents should embrace technology simply as a way to create relationship between their clients and themselves.
By properly using technology, we continue to build connections with our clients and, typically end up with the creation of a strong bond.
In the old days, agents relied upon clients deciding to work with them because they happened to see their name somewhere. This is no longer good enough anymore. People want to know all they can about their agents, and because of technology limitations, as agents we must be sure we’re putting out as much information as we can. Clients can see our face, they can see what we prefer to do, and see our personality.
The constant thing about technology is that it’s instant
Clients working with us online want to know what's happening, when and with whom. They do not mind an overnight wait for a response to phone message or text, although they want to stay in-the-loop when it comes down to what is going on with their property transaction. We need to have a system keeping them apprised to what’s happening, whether it’s using a specific technology system, or a tried-and-true manual system we already use.
We embrace technology and it's absolutely as personal as is a face-to-face encounter. We have created lasting friendship with people we have never meet in person. We Look upon technology as an extra tool, bridging those gaps that have forever been in real estate, and technology allows us to focus upon our day-to-day tasks in a more effective manner. Technology for us is helping to bring us all closer together in an exciting new way.
Mar 19, 2012