Bringing Buyers and Sellers Together Online
N-Play, “a real estate service company focused on bringing home buyers and sellers together online” released a beta launch this morning.
The company is the first to connect buyers, sellers and agents through secure submission, ranking and evaluation of offers online, directly from the listing display. N-Play is currently undertaking beta trials with several brokers and agents, including Prudential Network Realty, a major Florida brokerage. Invitations for the public launch and videos illustrating N-Play are available at https://n-play.com. The service will become available to all licensed real estate professionals within the next thirty days and will be offered exclusively to licensed real estate agents and brokers.
N-play is an application that is installed on a broker or agents web site. A visitor can click a N-Play button on a listing and be taken to a spreadsheet-like web page where they can enter various terms of a non-binding offer in real time.
Any other N-Play “offers” will also be displayed to the viewer. Talk about transparency!
Very Interesting, but Will Anyone Use it?
This is an interesting play (no pun intended). When a buyer makes an N-Play offer, it is anonymous, and non-binding. The seller can accept or reject the offer. When an offer has been agreed upon, a “Memorandum of Understanding” is sent to all parties summarizing the offer. With the assistance of their agents, the buyer and seller then enter into a binding purchase agreement. N-Play is not involved in the contract, presumably takes no referral fees, and steps out of the picture.
The first thought that popped into my head was, “this is cool”, followed shortly by, “How many ridiculous ‘offers’ will be made”, and “Will anyone use it?”.
Those questions are difficult to answer. There will be ridiculous offers, but the seller can easily ignore them (and let’s face it, ridiculous offers come across our desks all the time anyway). N-Play addresses such “Shill Offers” in their lengthy Service Policies. Shill/manipulative offers are forbidden, and N-Play claims they will ban users for submitting them.
Will anyone use N-Play? I suppose only time will tell. Brokers that have been involved in early testing claim there is great interest.
For Agents and Brokers Only
Kudos to N-Play for not trying to cut out the real estate agent/broker. This isn’t a way to connect FSBO seller to unrepresented buyer. It’s a way to connect buyers and sellers through an agent.
I have no clue what the price point is for an agent or broker to get N-Play. They say, “A variety of pricing plans will be available to suit large and small brokers, as well as individual agents.” Free introductory N-Play subscriptions are being given to the first 1,000 agents and first 50 brokerages that sign up. (Go to N-Play.com and click “Get N-Play.)
Sadly, in a slap to the small brokers out there, only brokerages with 100 or more agents can sign up for the free introduction. What’s up with that N-play?
There’s a bunch of videos on the site that explain more details. I haven’t had time to view them all, and personally I’d prefer some text explanation to supplement the videos. The site is beta, and there are some quirks (such as not being able to shut off the annoying intro video on the test drive page in FireFox).
This is a very interesting and unique concept, and it will be interesting to follow and see how it is adopted and used.