The Real Purpose of Technology

We in the real estate profession have undergone some dramatic and fantastic changes in recent years. The tools and the thought process for success have transformed most of us into some form of a techie geek. These changes affect each of us in a different way with varied results.

Think about what it took to locate a property within your marketplace? What it took to locate a property outside your marketplace or in another state? Consider the time it took to transfer the proper data or documents to initiate or close a transaction. Not very long ago we were snail mailing the contracts and every piece of pertinent information about the property. At the very least you were spending hours on the telephone and spending outrageous amounts of money on long distance!

Then, without the usual consumer skepticism, appeared the fax machine. An important step for our business because it transferred our data over the phone lines and allowed us to review documentation and get the necessary approvals within hours of being sent. The downside was the clarity of the documents and the ability to change or modify the documents. Any changes or modifications meant that you would be sending a fax of a fax and as we all know that document would be illegible at best. Along the same time came the cell phone, which allowed us to become a mobile profession. No longer were we forced to be in the office to make or receive phone calls. This created a new set of problems however as many of us became faced with the sound of a varied style of rings during meetings, at lunch, at dinner and before long cell phones were forced into the day-to-day lives of our society. Yes, there were some inconveniences and some intrusions but generally speaking we found ourselves meeting the needs of our clients and families in less time, and more efficiently.

During this general business evolution came the ultimate business companion; the computer. The computer is responsible for bringing the world into your living room. Never has information been so accessible to the average person. Most of us know how to communicate with our clients, our office, and our families via the computer and email. We can now construct spreadsheets, write letters, prepare flyers, create financial analysis, read the paper or just play games. The availability to the world is today and it is immediate. We now have access to properties in every market is seconds. Our criteria can be specific and thanks to the computer the results are again immediate. The computer has revolutionized the way we do business and has allowed many of to realize that the time saved by the use of the computer can now be redirected to our families, our hobbies and to helping others.

Today we see mobile phones with digital cameras, connecting to the Internet, sending email and all the while talking on the phone. Never has there been a greater need for time management. With the proper management you can not only get more accomplished in less time, you can redirect your energies to your passions. A dream comes true for a professional who understands that these toys were not created to make the workday longer, but rather smarter.

I decided I was going to buy the new lighter, quicker notebook computer to streamline my travel and meet my needs away from home. In the process it became apparent that I was going to spend any where from $2,000.00 to $4,000.00 dollars. I asked myself why and how I was going to use this new device. What did I really want to accomplish? While asking myself those questions and reviewing the new computer books trying to do my research, I stumbled across the new rage the hand held computer. WOW! For less than $600.00 I now have a phone, camera, Internet access, email, word processing, spreadsheet capabilities, time management, important tasks, games and much more. The world is getting smaller and faster. What are you doing to streamline your business, create efficiencies, and create the needed time-share in the lives of your family and friends?

To service the needs of our clients in the past we needed to provide those properties that met our client’s goals and objectives. That required that we search the local multiple listing service and hoped that the information on the available properties was complete and the property had not sold. Today we have access to the Internet and within a matter of minutes we can access the world and the selection process has become very specific. It is somewhat ironic that those in small markets are still dependent on the local Board of Realtors. Electronic access is almost always available, but not always a communication process among the professionals. Service continues with the ease of communication between the parties involved, principals, lawyers, accountants, title companies, and of course the agents. The ease in which we transfer documents and the legal precedence that guarantees success has only recently been tested and upheld in the courts.

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