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List for Free Real Estate Brokerage

Congratulations to Takeshi Sekiguchi on bringing his venture to the Mainland. I will be very interested to watch for traction in my market, San Diego.

I think that many would agree that the real estate model in North America, with all of its positive aspects, is and has been flawed for a long time, and that many of the early promises of technology have yet to be realized. We could all sit down and tell endless tales about the problems, issues, politics, data, MLS, unprofessionalism, etc.

This is my premature take. While we won’t know for a while, this model, from my perspective, has promise based on a number of things (Promise does not equate to sure success).

I have not seen the platform or the business plan…or their success in the Islands, and how they stacked up against the competition…but the ideas I have seen, with the right leadership and commitment, coupled with execution…and deep enough pockets, can have an impact and create major disruption, and corresponding opportunity, bringing social as well as technological innovation to the marketplace.

“List for free, buy for three” is a line we have heard and discussed frequently over the last few years. The listing side of the equation, with all of the attempts to shore up, has lost value and could lose more in the future. We have always said that the “data” is valuable. SRE thinks it is to the tune of more than half of the commission.

We would be fooling ourselves (or SRE would be missing a major point) if we did not also look at this as a major data acquisition strategy (as we saw with NAR and ZipForms a few months ago).

An important distinction…I don’t see this as a discount play…it is being positioned as a value added play. Charging less, for better service, is not a discount, but is value added, and one of the eight top consumer demands.

One more point, is the issue of anti-trust, as this is sure to get broker commission conversations going. Be careful.

Having said all of that, this is a tough business…”time, patience, and perseverance shall accomplish all things”…does Mr. Sekiguchi have what it takes? I would be a little more optimistic if Teke would have described him as a Multi- Billionaire:-)

SRE Matrix has used technology, discounts and salaried agents to make inroads in Hawaii and plans to generate much of its revenue by charging vendors for exposure on a proprietary end-to-end platform. The brokerage expands to Los Angeles, Las…
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