Technological development has helped to reform a variety of “analog industries.” Next up on the list is real estate. Tom Tognoli, the co-founder and CEO of real estate firm Intero Luxury International, is a pioneer in introducing groundbreaking technology into the property buying and selling process. In Tom’s opinion, we are at a crossroads; real estate agents must choose to embrace technology or face the consequences.
Why Do Real Estate Agents Need to Use Technology?
The real estate marketplace has always been a competitive one. Today, with the success of online platforms such as Zillow and Opendoor, the landscape is even more competitive. Buyers and sellers can simply go to these sites to view properties, minimizing the role of the traditional real estate agent.
Small and midsize brokerages must look for innovative solutions to stay competitive. Tognoli’s belief is that the agents who embrace technology and effectively leverage it (not only to find clients but also to service those clients) will be the ones who flourish in the future.
Embracing Technology Is Not Easy for Real Estate Agents
Based on the advantages of embracing technology, one would think that all real estate agents are rushing to adopt new tech as quickly as possible. However, that doesn’t seem to be the case. Training agents comes with increased expenses and sometimes steep learning curves. Thus, in his case, Tognoli favors the use of pilot programs in strategic offices that have tech-savvy agents. This way, it becomes easier to introduce new changes and eventually get all agents on the same page.
Here Is What the Agent of the Future Looks Like
The future role of the real estate agent will be an evolved one. An agent might be more of a consultant than just a tour guide. With technology replacing basic tasks such as document sending, signing, and storing, and properties being listed on the Internet for online viewing, real estate agents need to find skills that technology cannot provide. Hence, they need to provide the emotional and relational aspects that come with property buying, if they want to work side by side with new technologies.