At our latest Zillow Speaker Series, we invited Gordon Stephenson, real estate broker and owner of Seattle brokerage Real Property Associates, and member of Zillow’s Board of Directors to explain his perspective on how the real estate industry has changed in the past few years.
While the business of buying and selling homes has not largely changed, how real estate agents promote themselves and their homes has.
“Most agents’ business comes from referrals,” explained Stephenson, “but some agents are still trying to build that base.” Largely, they’ve turned to the Internet to do so through social networks on Twitter and Facebook, as well as real estate advertising on sites and mobile apps like Zillow.
Since the housing bubble, Stephenson estimates that many brokers and agents are spending more money in advertising — but rather than putting that money toward a flier or ad in a newspaper, they’re creating online ads and listings, or setting up custom domains for themselves or the listing they’re selling.
People are becoming Internet-centric, said Stephenson and “Internet-centric shoppers find homes and agents online.”