The Googlization of real estate Episode #200

Hello! Welcome to Todd Miller TV! There’s a new ad out today, it’s called “The Home Snap”. It’s something you do with your iPhone.You basically take a picture of a house and it shows you, you know, what the list price is and all this other crazy stuff. And you know, there’s been all this oohs and aahs about it and it’s just its/to m it’s unreal because it’s gimmick. It doesn’t add any value really to the consumer or anything, it’s, and I’m seeing this drawing trend of companies that are trying to take this device and make people think that somehow their app or their thing that they’re doing is gonna make their Real Estate transaction easier make theme be able to do it without and agent. And for the most part, it isn’t. And this/what this is the result of, and this app and all this other crazy apps out there is something called/that I call, “The Googlization of Real Estate” and what I mean by that is this popular belief that Google somehow and websites and all this Data is gonna emerge, and that the free market will take over and people will just be able to buy and sell houses and all the data because it’s all at your fingertips and actually what all this is doing is making it worst. It’s making it more harder, it’s making more misinformation, it making people give a bad information. I’ll give you a perfect example, I got a phone call from a guy who said “I wanna list my unit in this high rise and I see that you have a bunch of Listings in this high rise.” And I looked at/I see what’s the address, he gives me the address and I, I don’t have any active listings in that high rise. He was “Yeah, Zillow, I looked at 3 or 4 listings on Zillow are yours.” So I go on Zillow and sure enough, Zillow’s got a listing that I had a year or two ago. Says I’m the listing agent, it shows the price. So he wanted to hire me based on that and I’m sure other consumers are looking at that saying “Oh, Gosh! Look at how many houses are on the market.” Because these houses that sold, Zillow doesn’t know that. So Zillow just have its garbag information on the website. The other thing that you’re probably seeing with Zillow is the Zestimate, which is highly inaccurate. So the more we iterate on the actual data, the worst it gets. The more misinformation we put out there. So when we see this little home snap gimickee apps, hey don’t have any value. They don’t really do anything. As a matter of fact, the way this home snap app works is, you/in theory you take a picture of a house and it searches and it goes in its database and it finds that house and it tells you all about it. But what it really does is it just knows your location and it finds the nearest house and it assumes you’re taking a picture of it. You can actually take a picture down of your dog on the sidewalk and it would go “Oh! Well let me find you the nearest house to you, Oh here’s the house the blocks ways, this is the one you’re taking picture of. It doesn’t really like, search the picture of the house or anything like that. It’s doing that based on location, and it’s little gimickee. I mean I just, I think their bad because people are thinking they take a picture of the house and it does something, but it really doesn’t. And the big problem with this is that Real Estate is an imperfect world. It is a highly specific geographical phenomenon and it’s not something that you can collate a whole country’s worth of data, stick it on a website and have it mean anything. I think that’s the biggest mistake that we’re making here because by promulgating all these websites that don’t really add any value. Let me give you an example, when the listing goes in the MLS, it gets pushed to Realtor.com <http://Realtor.com> every 15mins. Everytime the status changes, everytime information changes, every 15 mins. that information does to Realtor.com <http://Realtor.com> . That’s the only website out there that has the accurate information. All the other websites have borrowed it from someone else. They either scraped it from someone, they’ve let agents or home owners report the data. It’s not accurate, when the prices changes, when the status changes, when it sells, none of that gets updated, and you’ll have listings that were listed 2 years ago, they’ve been fixed up, they’ve been listed again, and you still got all the data on the website showing that it’s active. So you’re making copies, and copies, and copies of bad data and you’re putting tons of that out there, and it’s a mess! So, this is not helping anybody, if you don’t believe me, if you don’t think this is bad stuff like this is not helping the consumer which is not, which it’s not. It’s not helping the consumer. Do this. Find the subject like an expert on it, like that thing you do for your job, that’s like you do it better that anybody else. You’re an accountant, you’re a doctor, you’re an attorney, whatever. And then you go on the internet and you start Googling some stuff you know whether it’s True or False and start to see how many different many opinions of authority have talked on this subject and said completely wrong things. And I’m sure you’ve seen this, you know, it’s like if you’re like me, I was a Jet Jockey in the Marine Corp and when I see movies like Top Gun, I laugh. That’s all fake. None of that stuff, you know, none of that stuff is real. It’s all hyperbole. So, this Googlization of Real Estate is not good. This companies that are using these Zillow gimmicks to get clients or get press, I just don’t see any value in it, I don’t see anything coming of it. What really matters in Real Estate is, the local market and somebody who understands the local market, all the data in the world is not gonna help you make a good decision on buying a house, selling a house, renting a house, or being an investor in a house and renting it out. It’s gonna be that local person in the field who understand that market, who understands the product, who understands the inventory, all the rules, all the procedures, all the, all the, all the, all the local, local, local things, that’s the person.So when I see this homesnap I laugh at it, it’s a joke. No one’s/I don’t see any/adding any value. I don’t see a lot this adding any value. Anyway, half of this was rant, most of it was really what I believe what I’m passionate about which is Real Estate and making the consumer understand the complexities of it and trying to give the consumer good information without bombarding them with bunch of crap information, which is really what’s out there right now. Anyway, that is my update for today and hope to see you on another video. Thanks.