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HousingWire lists top 50 real estate technology firms

HousingWire lists top 50 real estate technology firms

Publicity|May 31,2013

Why We Love Them

There are plenty of research tools out there that throw up potential leads by the dozen... and then some. Emphasis on the “seemingly” and “dozen.” Sales-hungry real estate agents and brokers know better. At least, often they do.

But in these stricken times of limited inventory, the imperatives of supply and demand are not tilted in the favor of buyers. So what does an agent do for a client keen on a particular area that has seen the “rats from a sinking ship” analogy turned on its head? By now, it’s a familiar drill in many areas. Buyers streaming toward limited inventory but frequently finding the door slammed shut in their faces because a cash-laden investor beat the rush.

And the old days of carpet-bombing neighborhoods with speculative marketing materials — the forests are still yawning — doesn’t cut it in the current era, where cutting costs and shaving off time are of the essence.

But the ReboGateway option from industry tech solutions provider Benutech attempts to get to the heart of the matter in a way that few — if any — have managed to do. The theory is relatively simple, but the results inversely myriad: nailing down the people who are most in need — or, cruder, most desperate — to sell their house. The company calls its product “a gateway to new listings,” hence the name. Key for the product is cutting wasted actions.

Fewer needless door knocks. Less pavement pounding. More freed-up time for leads more likely to pay off. Or so it seems.

So how does it do it? The company throws up properties through micro-elements of gathered intelligence — demographic information on recent divorces, tax defaults, notices of defaults — to present properties with “a higher probability” of needing to offload a property. But here is where it reduces the soup to a fine broth: A filtering mechanism cross-checks those listings in a given radius that, say, are in tax default and also bear a notice of sale “or mortgage situation,” as the firm suggests in a promotional video, to go along with it.

The product then can weed out the homes that are already listed, thereby presenting a list of potentially problem properties that can be mined for possible sale. Read: hot leads. This is a program with truly revolutionary capabilities in the realm of time and cost efficiency. Add in a marketing tool that allows agents to monitor specified areas for changes in the status of properties — recent divorces, defaults, etc. — and gain alerts when they happen, you have here a nifty tool in your leads-to-sales arsenal.

Users seem enamored. The usual array of platitudes run like a ticker feed on the product’s website. Some at least give a glimmer of illumination of what it means in practice. One user from California was quoted as highlighting the briskness of marketing material upload, the investment “small” and “the potential rewards are great.” That gets closer to the heart of what ReboGateway offers. Another agency attributes $10 million of their $60 million annual production to the product.

But beyond the self-generated testimonials, what are people saying? SeattleHome.com and SeattleCondo.com Co-owner Sam DeBord, writing on the Geek Estate Blog (geekestateblog.com) says the site “does an excellent job of taking extensive research time and costs off of real estate agents’ plates and allows them to focus on marketing to qualified leads that are more likely to result in listings.”

Our take? Of all the lead-research tools out there, this one packs a punch. It gets the detail of potential sellers down to some of the finest logical motivators for selling. It’s a take-no-prisoners approach that seems to yield big results.

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