Technology is ever evolving and has changed the landscape of many businesses, some more than others. The one industry that has been changed perhaps the most by recent technology trends is the real estate industry. Before the internet was as big as it is now, if you wanted to buy a new house, you had to find a realtor and rely on them to find you houses to look at. You were at the complete will of the realtor the entire time.
Today, with sites like Zillow and all the information that is available at our fingertips, someone can look for houses on their own. They can even be specific about certain areas they want to live in, school districts, price points, and more. The main role of the realtor many times is that of gatekeeper and helping get buyers and sellers in the same room. With all the changes that have happened in the real estate market, there are some on the horizon that may dwarf everything that has come before now.
Before we get too far, I have to mention that I reached out to Zach Riggs of Trusted Missouri Realtors to get his views on all of this. He specializes in Springfield, Missouri houses for sale and is a successful and respected realtor. He gave me a lot of insight and contributed a lot to this article.
Zach said one of the things that will happen is the internet will continue to grow in usefulness to agents, and if agents are resistant, they will get left behind. He said one of the biggest places where it seems to be growing is on Facebook. He said this is because a large part of being a successful real estate agent is creating strong relationships with clients. So people come to trust an agent and will share their facebook posts. Then, when they see friends say they are moving or looking for a home, they will refer them to their agent. Zach said it’s hard to quantify how this works, but it definitely plays a role in creating a successful real estate brand.
He also said that agents should get used to the fact that they aren’t in charge anymore. Clients have almost the exact same access to listings of new homes and they will tell you where to go. An agent’s role is to make the whole process as easy as possible. Zach said he feels his role is to get them into the house and then help them decide if the home is a good fit, a good price, and if there is anything they should have checked out. He said many agents have had a hard time adjusting to this, but if you can make the adjustment, you will have a successful real estate career.
It goes without saying that technology will continue to change the way we do things and the real estate industry is going to be no different. While it may be uncertain how it’ll look in 5-10 years, you can rest assure that there will always be a place for great agents that care about the well being of their clients.