We Still Need Real Estate Brokers—And Here’s Why
The real estate business has always been about personal service. The reason is simple: buying a home is one of the most personal decisions we make in our whole lives.
Your home is reflection of you. It contains all of your hopes and dreams for yourself and your family. It is where your kids’ heights will be marked on the doorway as they grow. It will be where you make a lifetime of memories.
The milestones of our lives are imprinted on our homes. When people look for a new home, they know that the one they buy will help to shape their future.
That’s why, even in this age of technological advancement, the Realtor is an essential part of smart home buying.
Only a real estate agent can help customers feel they are making the right decision.
What Tech Can (and Can’t) Do
Of course, in today’s world, tech is a part of everything we do. From buying groceries to health care, almost every aspect of our lives has a tech component. Why should real estate be any different?
Many of the threats to the Realtor’s role seem to come from the tech world. Apps answer questions real estate agents were once asked. Homebuying sites make it possible to purchase a home without ever interacting with a human. Everything from finding a home to financing it can be done online.
So, where is the real estate agent’s place in this new homebuying landscape?
The answer is the same place they’ve always been: guiding buyers in their decision making, taking them step by step through the process.
Purchasing a home can be confusing and scary, and there is no app that can change that. Only the caring, capable guidance of a real estate agent can provide the peace of mind homebuyers need.
Tech and the Realtor
Instead of seeing personal service and tech as separate, the most successful Realtors understand that the two can work hand-in-hand.
Imagine you’re a client, thinking about buying a new home. You have an idea of what you want. So, you go online to look at what’s available for sale. You find a local real estate agent’s website. On it are beautiful pictures of a wide range of homes. Click and you find out about the home’s history and specs.
That’s a lot of information, but does that mean that a real estate agent is unnecessary?
By looking online, you can get a good idea of what is available. You can even find something you love. So, do you click a BUY button, putting a new home in your cart like you’re buying a pair of shoes?
Of course not. You still have questions about home buying. You still need help understanding the process. Most importantly, you need to feel like you’re making the right decision, an informed decision.
Just having access to information is not enough if you’re not an expert.
You need a real estate agent to make sense of the information you are seeing. You want a real estate agent to reassure you that you’re making the right decision for you and your family.
A site can show you pictures of a house, but only a real estate agent understands what it takes to find a home.
The more our society depends on tech, the more we realize the limitations of it. A computer is not a person. A computer can find you a home with specific features, but only a real estate agent can understand and interpret your needs.
Best of Both Worlds
The ideal, as is often the case, lies in between the two—the tech world and the real world.
Using a Realtor and having access to technology shouldn’t be an either/or proposition. The best Realtors serve their clients’ needs and, today, that means providing digital technology.
A real estate firm doesn’t have to be a big conglomerate to provide online services. With website developers like Site Hub, even businesses without dedicated I.T. departments can compete technologically.
By offering digital services and an appealing website, the work of both the Realtor and the buyer are made easier. The agent knows the customer has access to the information they need. The buyer feels more comfortable in their choice.
The connection between a Realtor and a client is still the essential part of a successful home search. Digital technology can make that connection even stronger by ensuring the customer feels well-informed, connected, and confident.
Very in depth article, Sean. As a realtor, our clients understand our worth and I have never felt replaced. I think the pace has just increased because of technology and because of that, it is harder to keep up with an informed client. This simply makes the good agents even better. They have to stay even more up to date with the market and they have to have fast response times. With good technology like a good website that can be used by clients to gather info and a tool like the matterport we have, we are able to stay ahead and have more to offer our clients technologically with an increase in our own expertise.
Spot on Tom!