Trends in Real Estate Innovation

Zillow Blog’s Spencer Rascoff reports an interesting tidbit from last week’s Inman Connect conference, involving Glenn Cohen, CEO of Expert Realty.

Glenn made what I think was one of the most interesting comments of the conference: most of the innovation in the real estate industry right now is about liberating data (e.g., Zillow, Trulia, Propsmart, etc), whereas most of the innovation five years ago was about alternative brokerage models (e.g, Zip Realty, Foxtons, discount MLS providers). It made me wonder where the next wave of innovation will come from five years from now.

Service, expertise, and professionalism! I believe that five years from now we are going to see a hybrid of the real estate agent and the real estate consultant. As data becomes available to the masses, it will become increasingly difficult for agents to demand high commissions–unless they are providing service above and beyond that of what many provide today. Consulting services will become prominent, giving homeowners even more choices when it comes to selling their homes. Instead of handing over the keys to a full-service agent as is the norm today, homeowners might pay hourly for a la carte professional help asessing the market, pricing, advertising, marketing, negotiating etc.

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