People are wondering where real-estate-selling business will go.
The Uber Real Estate yesterday proved to be fake news – they aren’t affiliated with the real Uber – but they did follow a familiar theme; bashing the traditional realtor model.
Virtually every disrupter does the same thing, accusing regular agents of charging too much for doing too little. Then they claim to do the same thing (full service) for less money.
But nobody has offered a different way to sell homes. Why? Because there isn’t any mystery about the process; it is what it is.
Sellers decide how much help they want and need to expose their home to the marketplace, and handle the details of getting to the finish line. Buyers review the offerings, and decide how much help they want and need to buy one.
That’s it – that’s the process.
HOW MUCH HELP DO PEOPLE WANT? DO THEY KNOW WHAT THEY NEED?
Because nobody in the business does much to expose what they actually do to sell homes, the difficulty of buying and selling is a mystery. As a result, it looks easy – easier than it really is, especially as we’re transitioning into new and relatively unknown market conditions.
They don’t know how much help they will need because they under-estimate the difficulty. Sellers have sold cars and other items in their life, and take pride in knowing a few things about their world. Buyers have rented homes before – how hard can it be to buy one?
Disrupters ignore the difficulty too, and claim their Full Service is all you need.
But we’re in an era where the difficulty is getting harder, as the disrupters are making it sound easier – and cheaper.
As a result, the consumers (sellers and buyers) are under-served. Some don’t think they want much help, if any. This includes the sellers who think that paying less for limited exposure will still net them the same money, and the buyers who go to the listing agent direct – thinking they will get a better deal.
Traditional realtors could make their stand by mounting an effective advertising campaign to demonstrate the truth about the difficulty, and how important it is to get good help. It’s what consumers need to hear – and then find the appropriate service provider.
Without that guidance, consumers will select their realtor like they buy everything else in the Amazon era – rush a cursory review of the choices, and then grab one based on chance and luck, not thorough research.
Why don’t the traditional realtors step up to the microphone? Because they haven’t had to yet.
But when they do, they will be faced with an interesting decision. Do they take the high road, and educate consumers properly? Or jump into the swamp?
Let’s hope for more consumer education. We have more choices of service providers than ever, but less truth!
GET GOOD HELP!