Death of the Realtor

Headline – April 17th, 2013 – RE/MAX Grounded

RE/Max International based in Denver, Colorado closed its doors today. The real estate giant, who once boasted a workforce of 100,000 agents spanning 65 countries, is calling it quits.

“It is with great regret that we have elected to close the last 43 offices today and file for bankruptcy” said CEO Charles Monterey. remax11

“After months of reviewing our options, this is unfortunately our most logical choice.”

RE/MAX follows on the coattails of several recent real estate corporate failures; ERA, GMAC and Progressive. The only major player remaining; Century21 was unavailable for comment.

You won’t read this in the newspaper in 2013. Not because it didn’t happen, but because you can’t put your hands on pulp and ink print anymore. You’ll read the headline on your PDD (Personal Data Device) feed from the ABN (Associated Bloggers Network).

You see it all around us. Not a week goes by without another local newspaper throwing in the towel.

So to it goes with the Yellow Pages. Three weeks ago some bone-head penetrated the gated community where I live to rudely hurled a 2000 page yellow book into my yard. I picked mine up and threw it in the trash like everyone else. If I need a phone number, I’ll Google it.

If the Home Owners Association (HOA) would spend more time stopping these solicitors from getting through the gate instead of worrying about the dimensions, color, hue, and tone of my shrubs, the world would be a better place. HOA Nazis are a peculiar breed and may be so far gone that rehab may no longer be an option. But I digress; HOA abuse deserves its own posting.

• The railroads never opened their eyes to see that they were in the transportation business. Theodore Levitt is still right after 50 years.

• Dell Computer figured out how to get rid of the middleman.

• The Music industry never did get it that the world was changing…until it did.

• The Associated Press (AP) is the latest victim of complete arrogance. Just Google “AP Struggle” or any similar term for a hefty dose of insanity.

You always knew that paying your realtor 6% commission should be considered rape. It is the same thing as rape; loss of control. You just can’t pinpoint the proper statute to prosecute them.

Realtors are facing the same guillotine as the Santa Fe Railroad, Dell, and Sony.

Their entire model is based on sticking their nose into the home selling process when neither the buyer nor seller wants them there. They want you to believe that you are not smart enough to sell your own home. Like the 6:00 news, they use as many scare tactics as possible to convince you that “going it on your own” will be disastrous.

Their model is based on the monsters under your bed.

“Let’s see ….I managed to tie my own shoes this morning, so I think I can show my own kitchen and master bedroom without adult supervision.”

The current real estate model is based on hiding information from buyers and sellers so that they can’t complete the sale on their own. In today’s wired world, how can a model be sustained that relies solely on sequestering information?

It can’t.

In the age of speed and transparency, these guys get it. is a Canadian Franchise that has essentially taken out the middleman in real estate. They help coach you in selling your home without the middleman and at a fraction of the cost. The model works in part because they don’t hide information like the old MLS dinosaur model. All the information any buyer or seller could ever need is right there on your computer. They show you that there really are no monsters under your bed.

Watch out realtors, the Canadians are coming.

What about your business? Is it operating on a dinosaur model? Are you concentrating on selling products or on meeting your customer’s needs?

Take a close look because one thing is for certain: unlike Detroit, you will not be given a stack of get out of jail free cards!

Mark L. Fox

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Mark L. Fox is a leading authority on teaching practical creative thinking techniques for business. Mark was the youngest Chief Engineer ever on the Space Shuttle program at the age of 31. He received NASA’s highest recognition of “Launch Honoree” at the age of 23. Mark has an undergraduate degree in Chemical Engineering with an MBA. Having held top management positions in Rocket Science, Aircraft Hydraulics, Engineering Services, Customer Service, Software, and e-Business, Mark has an extremely diversified background.

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