I hate to sound defensive…

…and I really don’t mean to be. But after the 60 Minutes episode aired, the emails I received, Pat’s article, and the Redfin site itself, I feel like I have to respond.

I think Redfin is fine. I, like Teresa, am fine with new business models and ideas. There is plenty of work for everybody. I hope Redfin is successful and I wish them the best. But I take exception to the idea that Realtors need to be “different” and Redfin lays claim to all the ways they are “different.” I read them…the differences…mmm, not so much.

  • “We use technology to empower consumers”  I use technology, media, conversation – whatever – to empower consumers. The real estate market is huge and your investment in it is important to me. Need information? Let me know – I’ll get it to you. And guess what – you don’t owe me a dime.
  • “We let consumers come to us”  Customer service is job one! Come to me or I’ll come to you. Whichever makes you more comfortable. There is a Realtor out there for everybody. If I’m not the one for you, then I hope you find the one who is – refer to my opinion on working in real estate.
  • “We work with consumers directly” Realtors work with people directly. Neat thing about me and most Realtors I know, we want to do a great job for you. We want to be exceptional. My company issues quality assurance surveys and regularly monitors customer satisfaction. Guess what else? You don’t like the job I’m doing, tell my broker and you can fire me. Too many of those and my broker will let me know he can’t hang my license anymore (read as “I will need a new place to work.)
  • “We pay our agents to do the right thing” Again, most agents I know thrive on “doing the right thing.” Our Code of Ethics demand it. Our personal moral fortitude insists on it. Unhappy consumers are not good for business, so we don’t make more when you pay more for a house in the long run. We succeed when we excel, you come back to us, and tell your friends you love us.
  • “We guarantee 100% customer satisfaction”  Yep, that about sums it up for me too.
  • “We want to change the industry for the better” That one too.

Comments

  1. Good points… I agree that Redfin and tech savvy Realtors like you are essentially travelling along the same path, and it’s one that will make the consumer more comfortable about home purchasing in the long run.

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