I’m not knocking Redfin for their latest idea. In fact, it’s rather brilliant, and they have the capital behind it to back their ideas up.
But before I tell you all about it, I DO want to point out that yours truly, as well as several other local San Francisco Realtors, have been providing the same information to their clients for years now.
Redfin has relaunched their website so that now, if you register with their site, you’ll have access to sold real estate data from several areas in the country. According to the news from the AgencyLogic blog:
With this upgrade, Redfin’s most important of the year, consumers get crucial powers that had previously been limited to real estate agents. “Comparative Market Analyses are one of the real estate industry’s ‘killer applications,’” said Michael Smedberg, leader of Redfin’s query & statistics team, “but they’re often shrouded in mystery; agents have direct access to data such as prices and photos for just-sold homes, but buyers rarely do. Without that direct access, consumers have had to rely on the expertise and availability of their agent, and this in turn made it hard to figure out on their own what to offer or ask for a listing. Now Redfin has given consumers the tools to investigate selling prices on their own, which they can couple with a real estate agent’s expertise as they see fit. If a house sold last week, all the sales data will be on Redfin.com. It’s a big leap in consumer independence.”
Well, I’m all for transparency in the industry – and as I mentioned, I’m not the only one! Several other local agents in San Francisco have been providing this SAME data on a smaller scale for some time now. The only problem is that just like with Redfin’s service, you need to register to receive the data. (I’m not sure why, but my only conclusion is that the San Francisco MLS apparently still believes we need to keep consumers ignorant to keep them using REALTORS, while I think that the more info REALTORS provide, the more valuable we are to the public.)
In my case, I provide an (almost) weekly newsletter that provides you with 30 days worth of sold data. You can sign up for it at www.thecityupdate.com.
To be frank, I like my clients to be armed with information, no matter where they get it. The reason being is that an informed consumer can make intelligent decisions based on full information. I do my best to provide clients with all the data they need to be informed (whether buying OR selling a home), but frankly, the more options out there, the better. 🙂
So thanks Redfin for making our jobs as San Francisco real estate agents a little easier and giving those agents that don’t already provide sold data to their clients a way to stay informed. 🙂