Friday, September 07, 2007

selling houses


I was digging around on Google image search for some images for some CONdo marketing spoofs that I have been amusing myself with, and came across this below. The last paragraph really floats my boat in speaking of Interesting way of turning the real estate market upside down, letting demand nudge supply in the right direction, and moving the market from push to pull. This market needs to be turned upside down (though I do believe that is starting - thanks to the "credit crunch"?) The original page can be veiwed here in it's original context.

This could blow craig's list, VOW, MLS, etc., out of the water if implemented here. Hmmm. Anyone interested in a .com startup? I just don't have the giddy-up-go these days. You can give me 1% as a finder's fee though (grin). Google Inc. is probably all over it already...

Igglo combines large amounts of real estate information into a customer friendly package that could alter how the housing market operates, by letting potential buyers 'pre-order' houses that aren't yet for sale.

The Finnish company has photographed every building in Helsinki, with more towns to follow, and combines these photographs with satellite images and maps. Every property is listed, not just those that are currently on the market. (Their tagline is: "Your house is already on Igglo.")

Potential buyers can earmark a building, street or neighbourhood they're interested in, and post offers online. This lets potential sellers find out how desirable their property is, even if they weren't actively considering selling. Buyers also receive an alert when a property in their earmarked building or area comes up for sale.

If demand and supply meet, Igglo handles the transaction for a lower fee than is charged by regular real estate agents (less than 2%). Lower fees are made possible by the fact the Igglo agents don't get involved until buyers and sellers have found each other. The company is looking to expand the service to other big cities.

Interesting way of turning the real estate market upside down, letting demand nudge supply in the right direction, and moving the market from push to pull. One to watch!

(emphasis mine)

7 comments:

Will said...

Nothing new here. Realtors do this all the time. I've personally searched for matches for my clients and called up over 200 people, viewing three of the places, and they bought one of those three.

Currently, as you know, we have a very low supply. There are far more buyers than listed sellers. In situations like this, or in searching a very specific property, a good buyers agent can make it happen.

solipsist said...

Nothing new here. Realtors do this all the time.

- I think that you have missed the points emboldened below. It sounds new to me, else, perhaps a link to such a service in Vancouver could be supplied?

Igglo combines large amounts of real estate information into a customer friendly package...

- I personally find most agents' sites to lack breadth, and often one has to open oneself up to phone calls and/or e-mails from realtors just to see their listings.

by letting potential buyers 'pre-order' houses that aren't yet for sale.

- Although I find solicitations from realtors interested in selling my house in my mailbox, I have never had an agent tell me that they have a buyer in specific.

If I love a house at 123 Main St., and want to know the minute it is for sale, I need to wait for it to hit MLS first (unless I go to the homeowner and tell them to call me if ever they want to sell).

...photographed every building in Helsinki. Every property is listed, not just those that are currently on the market.

- I've never seen that here. You talk about calling 200 people (which must have taken you many hours to do), but there are tens of thousands of houses in Vancouver. Igglo sounds much more efficient.

...post offers online.

- ie: no agent refusing to show "discount brokerage" listings.

...Igglo handles the transaction for a lower fee than is charged by regular real estate agents (less than 2%).

- I believe that commissions under the system that we have approach 7%. Igglo @ less than 2% means a savings of about $35,000 on the Vancouver benchmark. That could mean renovations, an added suite, or a new car, or putting your kid through university.

...agents don't get involved until buyers and sellers have found each other.

- 'nuf said.

M- said...

Solipsist: just to note, when I sold my place, I negotiated a small discount from my realtor, to 6% on the first 100K and 2% on the balance. It worked out to a little over 3% when we sold.

steve said...

solo

commissions here are 7% on the first 100k and 2.5% on the balance.

generally.

solipsist said...

m- It worked out to a little over 3% when we sold.

steve - commissions here are 7% on the first 100k and 2.5% on the balance.


Thanks for the numbers.

I should note (again) that I have no bias against realtors. I have employed them in the past with no complaints. One of them worked hard for his (seller's) commission, and the other never made a cent as a buyer's agent, because value (in my mind) was already absent the Vancouver market, and we decided to wait out the irrationality. That was 3 years ago...still waiting...

I was attracted to the Finnish idea because of the visual data base, and the idea that one might spot something that one really liked, and be in on the bid as soon as it came up. There are a few places in Van. that I have specific interest in.

I still think it's different.

**I just realized that will=Will Wertheim, and I have to say that I like him (through his postings and blogs). From what I have discerned, he is a straight shooter, and no slight is/was intended.**

I still think it's different!

Anonymous said...

I think this is a great idea! Take it a step further and eliminate the Realtor altogether.

You could view (mapped) recent sales (for comps) and directly contact owners wishing to sell.

This is great - this could be the Craigslist/Googlemap/MLS of realty.

Think about it. It's all about putting buyers in touch with sellers. Realtors otherwise tend to insulate/isolate them.

I like this.

greg said...

You can leverage this service by utilizing it as a way of connecting buyers and sellers with legal professionals - lawyers, notaries etc, also mortgage brokers, moving companies et al.

Do most people need a broker when they buy a car - no. Why - because generally other comparable cars are available to establish price and market value. That's what this could do.

However, I can see some legal pitfalls, such as, what if I don't want my address or pictures of my property published? Can I opt out of this database? If not, there could be some serious legal repercussions for the managers of the service.

But a cool idea indeed.