Friday, January 05, 2007

Are Realtors becoming irrelevant in todays market?

Brad Inamn was soliciting perspective on his blog regarding how industry participants perceive the consumer perspective towards Realtors or agents, if you will. This was my response posted to the Inman Blog:

The better question to start with is what does the average consumer think of when the term Realtor is used? My guess is "Realtor" is synonymous with "agent". To that end I believe that agents who provide obvious value added services will not become obsolete. The 85% of "realtors" or agents who simply throw a listing in the mls and then pray that something happens are already obsolete, they just haven't checked their bank accounts recently enough to know it.I believe the historical broker/agent office model is fundamentally broken and effectively dead.

How many traditional realty firms are busy downsizing and consolidating offices to reduce overheads? As more information is made available to the general public through all sorts of websites, the traditional role of a broker/realtor/agent as a "funnel' of information is increasingly irrelevant. As well, the age old advertising techniques and methods are also becoming more and more irrelevant. Those who embrace change, stay on the leading-edge of not only technological change, but societal changes as well will grow and prosper. Those who continue to muddle along on auto-pilot are dead.

As we move forward, I think consumers will be far more self-educated regarding all aspects of real estate issues, practices and transactions and will have far more sophisticated demands of those professional practioners who will need to be able to respond to consumer needs with demonstrable skills, techniques, technological capabilites and overall business savvy.

MLS's (and by association, Realtor.com) will become increasingly less important, and in my mind far more quickly than many expect, as replacement mechanisms will quickly evolve to displace them. There is no rocket science involved in putting sellers and buyers together. Many other "trading" or "brokering" industries have already gone through this evolution. It will happen and will happen soon.

Just remember - Think outside of the box or you will end up being buried in the box.

Have a great and prosperous day!

Vito Boscaino
Owner / Realtor / MBA
Help-U-Sell North High Realty
4485 North High StreetColumbus, Ohio 43214
Web: http://northhighrealty.helpusell.com

Office: 614.447.3050

So these are my thoughts. What are yours? I would be interested in hearing from the general public about their views on the role of the traditional real estate agent and how important they perceive an agent to be in the process of buying or selling a home. Share your thoughts with us.....

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