The real estate world of technology has seen huge changes in the last decade and, in the near future, even more dramatic changes will occur.
To reminisce, in our real estate office 12 years ago, among the things that did not exist were: voice mail, plain paper faxes, call forwarding, color copiers, digital cameras, and lest we forget, the Internet and e-mail.
The cell phones we had, if we had one, were big, clunky and service was marginal.
What did exist was a black and white real estate book of properties for sale. The book was out-of-date the day we received it. A DOS dial-up connection allowed our one computer to display a monochrome list with no pictures of properties for sale that could be printed on a dot matrix spool printer — seems like ancient history, and it was only 12 years ago.
The major evolution in the real estate industry was the advent of the Internet.
Statistics show that 84 percent of buyers look to the Internet to help make their real estate decisions.
We are now able to let the whole world look at our properties for sale. The Payson Coldwell Banker has had contact with potential buyers across the pond in England.
The predominant Web site in the real estate industry is www.realtor.com.
The Web site hosts more than 6.5 million unique visitors per month and with a viewing time of over 180 million minutes per month.
With influx of real estate Web sites, a consumer has more information available to them than ever before.
Buyers can take virtual tours of homes online and get information on their property value.
In some cases, our clients have purchased homes sight unseen because of the quality of information on the Internet.
What’s coming next?
If you have an mp3 player, you will soon be able to receive podcasts of homes that are for sale in an area.
In other words, mp3 players will let you download a home presentation to take with you on the road. In addition, the Macintosh iPhone has special features that enable a user to view real estate Web sites.
Coming next is a phone that will have a global positioning satellite (GPS) feature, that will allow you to drive to a home you like that is on the market , recognize the property, and give you a video tour of the inside of the home at the click of a button. We have come a long way in a short time.
Ray Pugel is a designated broker for Coldwell Banker Bishop Realty. Contact him at (928) 474-2216.