The CEO of Move, Inc has commented on the News Corp purchase, and how Realtor.com can position themselves among Zillow/Trulia:
Berkowitz told HousingWire that he views the shifting landscape of online real estate as a positive for Move.
“We see Zillow and Trulia coming together as an opportunity,” Berkowitz said.
“What you will have now is two vigorous competitors vying for the hearts of the consumers,” Berkowitz added. “The industry will benefit from these moves. This will help the consumer understand the role that the Realtor plays. The difference between our competitors and us is the humanity that the word Realtor brings.”
Berkowitz said that despite the increasing popularity and acceptance of online real estate sites as a part of the real estate transaction, he doesn’t anticipate the human element ever disappearing from the home buying process.
“Humanity is something that we don’t think will ever move out of the transaction,” Berkowitz said. “Zillow is a cold, calculated estimate. It’s just numbers going into a database. A home is more than that. The home is the center of its own social network.
“There are roughly five million transactions a year. Those are transformational for the consumer. The role the agent plays is much more than just facilitating the transaction. They’re offering that sense that the transaction is life-alteringly important.”
Berkowitz said that he views the timeline of the Zillow/Trulia deal as another positive for Move.
“The ambiguity and timing of the Zillow/Trulia deal is an opportunity for us,” Berkowitz said. “Our competitors promised cost savings in 2016. I can promise that you will see the impact of (the Move deal) in 2015.
“I think you’ll see us look for ways to get off the ground running. We’ll take this runway we have and focus on building our constituencies.”
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