Thursday, December 07, 2006

Real Estate Agent Industry Disruption Continues

Most of us know that it is only a matter of time before real estate agents follow the same downward path as travel agents as the Internet allows information to flow more freely and new tools empower consumers to almost complete transactions themselves. real estate agents, like travel agents will continue to exist for complicated transactions, but the lucrative days for the typical agent are coming to an end. New tools such as Zillow will continue to disrupt the real estate world. They have just released new functionality called Make Me Move, which targets home owners who may have no intention of moving, but probably would for the right price. As a homeowner I can post a make me move price without exposing any personal information. Zillow then enables interested buyers to contact the owner anonymously. Of course the service is free for all home owners and realtors.

Now I am sure this service will be highly used by real estate agents as much or more than by home buyers, but as consumers become more savvy with these types of tools, it paves the way to remove the middleman altogether for all but the most complicated transactions. Current conventional wisdom now says: 'Why book a flight with a travel agent who will essentially use the same online tools as you have access too'. Soon, the same will be true for home buying. Real estate agents are just coming off the largest boom in housing history - time to think about how this industry will morph to survive as we move forward in the new economy.

information tip: Zillow on Tech Crunch

No comments: