Over the past decade, the real estate industry has changed immensely. New technologies have been playing a major role in impacting the way real estate agents do their jobs. Thanks to sites Zillow, Redfin, Estately, Upnest, Compass, Homesnap, and others that have helped the buyers narrow their search and find properties without the assistance of an agent. In fact, these websites are even giving consumers more choice when it comes to buying and selling a property.

In recent times, agents have taken the online and e-commerce route to boost their marketing and advertising efforts. A popular opinion in the technology community is that real estate agents will soon be replaced by software – be it in the form of direct consumer-to-consumer marketplaces, or programs which automate many of agent’s basic functions. Though technology is expected to accelerate the closing process and empower agents to more sales, it is proved that human agents will remain critical.

How is technology helping buyers?

With the advancement of technology, buyers are doing most of the home search process themselves. With the help of apps, websites, and digital platforms, buyers are finding potential properties and are even setting up alerts for new listings that fit their needs. Majority of the buyers do their research online to find out the areas and the schools they want their kids to go to. However, the only way to get to the door for them is to call a real estate agent.

It is more than a home search

Though property buyers are embracing technology, at the end of the day, buyers generally need assistance navigating the process. With today’s red-hot market and historically low inventory levels, it is the agent’s expertise that is more important than ever. The guidance of an agent helps greatly in saving time, being organized, and successfully going through the closing process and get the best deal. Though technology will definitely revolutionize the real estate market, consumers still rely on and value real estate agent.

How real estate agents can stay relevant with digitally-driven buyers?

Using the right tech, agents will be able to offer a very specialized knowledge, have a niche and provide real value there. It is understood that internet is replete with information, but it’s the agent’s knowledge that makes the difference between mediocrity and extraordinary. In fact, experts believe that digital evolution has helped scale the importance of human knowledge.

With the assistance of cloud technology, real estate agents can more easily share and collate various files and documents. These services eliminate the need for e-mailing documents back and forth. Furthermore, automating the business practices or tasks makes agents more available to clients. Compartmentalizing and picking only those tasks essential to the cause is what makes technology an agent’s friend.

The real estate agents who recognize that technology supports new ways of conducting business and building successful relationships will lead the way.

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