In the new movie Jumper, the hero is an otherwise normal guy who just happens to be able to jump forward in time–at will. For the real estate industry, the future never arrives so quickly. Instead it comes in dribs and drabs, day by day.
Still, the future always arrives.
He said that, because of the web, in the future, “Traditional agents will not be replaced by technology…they will be replaced by agents with technology.”
Here’s an example. When my wife and I decided to relocate to Sydney from Manhattan, we didn’t have Saturday newspapers freight shipped to us from the other side of the world. We just got out the laptop.
In the eight or nine months that we were looking, we contacted many agents. Some never got back to us and some were slow to get back to us.
One of the few who did reply promptly is the one who ultimately got a nice commission from selling us the unit we now live in. He didn’t have to meet us in person to close the deal because we bought the unit sight unseen. We even used the mortgage broker he recommended for our loan.
This agent at least partially and profitably embraced the new technology that is changing the real estate business. He responded to an unlikely internet lead and shepherded it along until it turned into a commission. We felt he had done a good job and communicated well throughout the process.
It’s not all roses, however, because after that he dropped the ball. We’ve lived in the unit he sold us for 16 months and–since we closed the transaction–we haven’t heard the word Boo from him. No email, no card, no visit. Because we are disorganized, we’ve lost his information. That means he’s lost a lifetime of potential business from us–after he went to the trouble of earning it the hard way.
Losing track of a customer could be understandable if this were 1979, or even 1995. But it’s 2008 and every agent today has the tools to never lose track of a customer.