BuySide Realty Inc. launches in Seattle and goes head-to-head with Seattle based Redfin Corp. Buyside Realty through Iggy’s House lists home for free while Redfin charges a flat fee for their MLS listing.
Will Buyside eat the perch for dinner? Who knows, but this will be more than interesting considering Redfin put a 23 day hold on all new listings. I suspect this is all in Buyside’s favor as Buyside enters and sheds a new opportunity, hype, publicity and a larger rebate to buyers. Redin offers a 66% rebate where Buyside offers a 75% rebate to home buyers. There is obviously no floor, but Redfin has already decided not to compete on the lower commissions, offering a localized service in comparison to Buyside who will operate online and by phone. Refdin does offer limited personal service at their discounted fee.
It would appear that the two VC giants are making nice at the moment- although both Heads have publicly commented on the other. Chief Executive of Iggy’s House, Joseph Fox takes a less confrontational approach:
“I believe that you have to change an industry from within the industry,” said Fox, who drew comparisons to his days in the online stock trading business. “I don’t believe that online buyer’s agents like us and others will knock out traditional agents. I was a believer in the 90s that online stock brokers will work with traditional stock brokers. And guess what? Ten years later there are still traditional stock brokers and online brokers. They have learned to work together.”
Glenn Kelman at Redfin basically dismisses Buyside:
“A long time ago we had to decide if we were going to match BuySide’s price and we decided not to. We decided to compete on quality of customer service, not on price.”
Fair enough. However, this past week, a blog came out exposing Redfin’s Listing agents’ lack of attentiveness to a listing and an unhappy listing client. The link and post were later pulled for concern that the blog post was in regards to an ongoing transaction. We aren’t sure if it was a direct result, but the day after the post was pulled, Glenn at Redfin issued the 23 day halt to listings via the Corporate blog making this admission:
“And yes, I know that traditional real estate agents don’t get a day off during the busiest time of the year either, and I don’t know how you do it. It’s a tough job. In the case of our agents, it seems to be especially stressful because they’ve been at the office late into the night, every night.”
With new competition looming, I would suspect they’ll be in the office even more.
Read full article here
Redfin blog here
BuySide Realty here
March 15, 2008 at 9:53 am
This is the problem where your value proposition is price. There is always someone who thinks they are worth less than you are. It will be a battle until finally somone says — “I am worth Nothing! Just let me make a fee off the loan.”
Our industry is changing — so this will all be very interesting to watch.
Flat Fee MLS
May 12, 2008 at 10:52 am
I think espcially in these economic times, this is a very good way to sell by owner and save a lot of money.
May 29, 2008 at 9:46 am
It seems like there a lot of pro’s and con’s and that each should be explored before acting.
September 13, 2008 at 12:47 pm
I live in the Detroit area and there is a company by the name of Reozom that is doing pretty much the same thing as BuySide is. We listed our house through them and have gotten a few calls already. They don’t charge a fee to place your property on the MLS and Realtor.com either. They do make you order title insurance through LandAmerica Title if you want your property to appear on the MLS and Realtor.com. At least here in Michigan it wasn’t an issue for us because title insurance rates are regulated by the state any how. As Dena Davis said maybe there just trying to make a fee off the loan, but is this case the title insurance. One other reason we didn’t mind ordering title insurance through them is because every title insurance company we called, including LandAmerica wanted an upfront fee. When we ordered through Reozom they waived the fee.
October 24, 2008 at 4:51 pm
You got to love the ability to sort the database on redfin. The buyside site is so limited in what listings it displays. Example only 19 listings in Tampa, FL on October 24, 2008. The typical search result on buyside is
“Your search returned no results. Please broaden your search criteria.”