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How Internet Has Affected the Real Estate Industry

Since its first conception in 1983, the internet has been a gift that keeps on giving.  The real estate industry was greatly revolutionized by the internet and the rise of a new digital age.  While there is so much to miss from the simpler days, the internet has allowed real estate to become much more than what people deemed capable.

Today, many real estate agents undeniably miss the old days where they could communicate face-to-face with clients and give in-person tours of different houses.  However, online listing, GPS tracking, virtual tours, and being connected through social media and cell phones have made it much easier for real estate agents to communicate with clients and close deals. 

Market Change

The real estate market has changed drastically from digital marketing to virtual tours due to the internet.  While most changes are technological, the most significant change in the real estate market due to the internet is the client’s role.

Before the internet, clients depended on their real estate agents for housing information.  Real estate agents were the only people who had access to housing listings and knew where the good houses were.  Clients had to rely on their real estate agents for information to buy or rent homes.  

The shift started with craigslist, an American company that openly advertised open homes and spaces for rent on their website.  Following this, various websites such as Yahoo! Real Estate and AOL Real Estate put housing listings online for everyone to see.  Though these websites, in particular, aren’t as popular anymore, the practice of viewing housing listings online remains.

Over time more and more information became available online. ¬†There are now countless websites on the internet that show people the hottest real estate locations. ¬†However, with so much information, clients are again starting to rely on real estate agents to help them get the best deal and pick the perfect “home.”

Benefits Gained

Many may see the role of the internet in the real estate industry as real estate agents losing their power to technology.  However, the internet has caused more good than harm by allowing real estate agents to do their jobs more effectively.  Here are a few ways the internet has positively impacted the real estate industry.

Easier Communication: It is much easier for real estate agents to communicate with their clients due to the internet.  Buying a house is a significant investment, so clients usually have many concerns or questions.  It is easier for real estate agents to respond to their client’s questions and give clients updates about their deals in real-time with the internet.

Virtual Tours: Virtual tours let clients see the inside of a real estate property without physically being there.  Not only do virtual tours save time, but they have been fundamental in keeping the real estate industry safe during the pandemic.

Paperwork: Frequent meetings with real estate agents about paperwork were the norm before the internet.  However, with everything digitized, this process is now much more straightforward.  Real estate agents help clients with paperwork online or over the phone.

Digital Marketing: Digital marketing has allowed real estate agents to find clients with targeted marketing.  Real estate agents would advertise their services using billboards or bus benches in the past, and digital marketing makes advertising easier while also reaching a broader audience.

There was much to love about the old days of real estate.  However, the internet brings scopes for the future of real estate that is brighter than ever.

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