RISMedia's Real Estate Magazine

FEB 2018

Real Estate magazine is the industry's leading source for real estate news and information since 1980. Published monthly by RISMedia, Real Estate magazine offers timely and relevant real estate news to the industry's top brokers and agents.

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18 February 2018 RISMedia's REAL ESTATE {REBAC Report} Admittedly, the numbers are impres- sive. Investor funding runs well into nine figures for the two largest direct homebuyers, Opendoor ($320 mil- lion) and OfferPad ($260 million). Among technology-centric brokerag- es, Compass Group recently landed another $450 million in funding, the largest U.S. real estate technology investment to-date. Should traditional brokerages feel threatened? Perhaps. Any firm that maintains a "business as usual" mindset, in any industry, is vulnera- ble to new competition. However, as long as brokerages are keeping up with changing consumer preferences and adapting to serve an evolving market, they should fare well. In my opinion, there are several ways to do this: Embrace technology. Whether it's new ways to market properties (virtual staging or tours), better ways to manage transactions (using Docu- Sign, zipLogix, etc.), or more efficient business prospecting (via strong Customer Relationship Management [CRM] systems or new predictive an- alytics), there are many ways to lever- age technology to make your agents' jobs easier and win over new clients. Deliver full service. It should go without saying that superior cus- tomer service is the best way to grow your business, whether you're competing against traditional bro- kerages or new real estate models. There will always be room for top- notch, experienced agents to gain business from appreciative custom- ers. Help your agents find ways to up their game. Foster relationships. Real estate may be about properties, but it's ul- timately an industry that centers on people, especially on the residential side. Technology can support those relationships, but it will never re- place them. Understand and promote repre- sentation. Within the Real Estate Buyer's Agent Council (REBAC), we're focused on helping buyers gain a better understanding of what fiducia- ry responsibilities mean, to them, in a real estate transaction. The point is equally important to sellers. We've found that agents who place a top priority on their representation skills consistently perform at a higher level and earn more clients. Never stop learning. NAR offers many designations and certifica- tions. While some agents gravitate to them for continuing education credits or personal marketing pur- poses, the greatest benefit of edu- cation is the opportunity to continue expanding our knowledge and skills. This includes learning how to adapt and compete against new real es- tate models. Finally, I'd like to add that our most recent issue of Today's Buyer's Rep (the monthly REBAC newsletter) ex- plored this topic in greater depth to help REBAC members get further up to speed on developments and impli- cations for real estate professionals. We encourage REBAC members to check it out—and encourage brokers to support the ABR® training and oth- er educational opportunities for their agents. If you're not a REBAC mem- ber, but would like to read this issue, please email rebac@realtors.org for a digital copy. RE Marc D. Gould is vice president, Business Special- ties, for NAR and executive director of REBAC. A wholly-owned subsidiary of NAR, The Real Estate Buyer's Agent Council (REBAC) is the world's largest association of real estate professionals focusing specifically on representing the real estate buyer. With more than 30,000 active members, REBAC awards the Accredited Buyer's Representa- tive (ABR®) designation to REALTORS® who work directly with buyer-clients. To learn more, visit REBAC.net. Prepping for the Future of Real Estate by Marc D. Gould I t seems like the real estate industry has been "ripe for disruption" for decades, although it's hard to recall a time when the headlines sounded as threatening. Over the past year, countless news stories and opinion columnists at major publishers have cited statistics and reported on start-ups poised to shake up the status quo. The stories seem to go hand-in-hand with a broader, recurring theme: technology will soon make virtually every job obsolete .

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