It wasn't long ago in a real estate committee meeting I made the statement, "the Internet has Changed how we do Real Estate FOREVER", I should have said everything forever! I just looked up some interesting statistics that may illustrate why we need to have better communications, better websites and better technology.
Smart phones were introduced in mass to the public in 2009 with a mere 25% of the population owning one of the tiny technology marvels. The consumer electronics industry reports the number jumped to 52% in 2011. That's significant but another 52% say they will buy one in the near future. That is gigantic for real estate agents and companies that create websites and listing compatible with smart phone formats.
The cable companies are not off the hook either. The Internet is having an impact on them as well, Deloitte released the results on "State of Media Democracy" and 9% have already cut their cable company off with another 11% considering stopping service as well. Then add the data that an additional 15% will probably watch movies and news from their computers they could lose a significant income stream.
Now consider the post office and snail mail that we subsidize to the tune of millions in losses because of email. Newspapers, magazines, newsletters, banking, appointments all done via the Internet. Birthday cards are send ecards. Kodak filed bankruptcy we still take photos but not with traditional cameras. We take video but not with movie cameras. Our documents are in the clouds, our photos tagged and we have backed-up our documents in gigabytes and terabytes not even burn a gallon of gas or worn out our penny loafers.
The new laws and rules that will impact the Internet will be profound over the next few years. SOPAis currently working toward an International deal on domain names and it looks like Congress will roll over without much thought on the impact of the legislation.
For us, as real estate agents and real estate brokers, keeping ahead of the technology curve to serve clients information in a format that is available in the palm of their hands will be our task. Keeping information current and timely with RSS feeds and market condition analysis that makes our information more valuable than a national or regional news feed.
Letting aggragators of real estate listings format our listings without offering real insight into the property listing. Nothing more than a quick statistically rundown of the property and an abbreviated description ranked based on how much you pay then for your listing position.
I was right about the Internet changing real estate forever but it has also changed our lives forever! Today kids sit on the couch or car and punch away at little buttons sending off abbreviated messages. They meet online and adults do the same thing. The little buzz of a Smart-Phone interrupts meetings, conversations and driving for a quick glance at who may be offering the next showing, listing or tidbit.
How we use technology will determine our businesses and future in real estate.