Zillow: The Realtor-Less Mega Disaster

Certain technologies in our lifetime have been game-changers. Doug remembers working in Milwaukee for Allen-Bradley/Rockwell Automation when he sent a Telex for the first time back in 1989. He hit a button and sent a message electronically to a coworker on a different floor. The message was typed on their local Telex, and presumably, an admin person ripped off the page and stuck the message in the mailbox for the intended person. Wow – How cool was that?

Not long after, which would have been in the 90s, Doug was living in Boston when we began sending emails worldwide and started using teleconferencing equipment without cohorts in France and Germany regularly. What were next, ordering shoes, furniture, and wine online? Yeah right.

From a small real estate firm’s perspective, Zillow has changed our industry’s face in many ways. Had you ever heard of a Zestimate 3 years ago? Did you know that Zillow can keep listings listed as “Active” on their site for as long as they wish? Were you aware they purchased the SEO (Search Engine Optimization) market for hundreds of millions of dollars on Google regarding real estate?

Zillow’s grand plan is to recreate the entire real estate market, just like Amazon did about retail shopping. While we will always need some stores for certain products, today’s kids could care less about going to a mall to buy something, for they have Amazon accounts to do that. They also don’t use cash – as they purchase even a stick of gum with their debit cards.

Someday, after many of us are probably pushing daisies, an entire real estate transaction might be done electronically and without human involvement. That is where Zillow is attempting to take our industry. Still, for the time being, they are finding out that while Amazon can replace the in-person shopping experience for hundreds of millions of people worldwide, real estate agents still provide too much personal knowledge that cannot be bottled up in an online app.

At Carolina Plantations, we focus on people that are considering our area for retirement. This is an incredibly significant move and includes so much more than just buying a house.

As our infamous Martini Theory states, first, you must find the AREA that meets your personal needs (such as medical services, shopping, dining, culture, beaches, etc.)—followed by finding which COMMUNITY matches your requirements (such as socio-economics of the residents, architectural styles, activities, fees, clubs, etc.). Once you have found the right AREA & COMMUNITY, finding you the right HOME is usually effortless. No app is going to help you sort through the first two steps of the Martini Theory.

Here is a laundry list of additional offerings we provide our clients and which an app simply cannot do:

  • Our website – www.carolinaplantations.com – is 100% accurate and current. Zillow and Trulia are inaccurate, as they do that to mislead you purposely.
  • We send our clients a Coastal Guide Book, a 1” binder customized to your requirements and jammed with great information on dining, medical, shopping, beaches, golf, fitness, weather, and more. (FYI: our clients go NUTS OVER OUR COASTAL GUIDE BOOKS as no real estate company in the world sends you something so comprehensive and specifically aimed at your search. Order yours NOW at //www.carolinaplantations.com/contact#contactForm)
  • We set up conference calls with both spouses/partners before your visit so that everyone is on the same page and so that we can make the best use of your time while you are here.
  • Our team will take you on a tour of the area. That could include Wilmington/Wrightsville Beach, Oak Island/Southport, Holden Beach/Shallotte, Leland, Ocean Isle Beach, Sunset Beach, and more. We will have lunch on the ICW while we provide you with essential tips on Coastal NC.
  • With your permission, we will be your Buyer’s Agent, which means we work for you, not the builder, Developer, or Sellers. This is incredibly important as one should never attempt to purchase real estate somewhere where you are not familiar with local real estate rules, local zoning issues, lending practices, closing procedures, and more.
  • Since nearly 70% of our clients purchase land and later build their Dream Home on it, we are all extensively trained in understanding land purchases. That includes but is not limited to the slope of the land; researching available utilities; assisting with the direction of the sun rising and setting; designing custom-built homes; introduction to quality builders; positioning your home correctly on your homesite; assisting with the selections of your colors/cabinets/flooring/granite and more.
  • We are negotiating on your behalf. We usually know the other realtors involved in the transaction, which can be extremely helpful in getting you what you want at the best price.

Zillow has made its mark on real estate; however, it will be a while before they “are” real estate. Until then, the team at Carolina Plantations is still the #1 Retirement Experts in Coastal NC. We look forward to assisting you with your all vital retirement search, wherever it may lead you.

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