I went to Inman Connect in Las Vegas… Here’s what I learned

Welcome to Las Vegas!

I’m at Inman Connect, Residential Real Estate’s leading event. 

I was looking forward to attending this Conference for all of the high quality Speakers and Real Estate Sessions Inman is known to bring on stage. 

Being a Board Member on the Realtors Association, brings me to some great events… OREAlity, NAR, CREA, I get something out of every one.

This one was especially cool though, because Inman is an independent real estate industry news source, so it’s just raw knowledge from leaders in every aspect of our industry/profession. Oh, and it was in Vegas, which is also pretty cool.

Naturally in attendance were Realtors and Brokers, as well as lawyers, mortgage, title and insurance brokers, and other real estate stakeholders, like technology companies and investment fund reps. 

The trade show had some pretty cool products and services on offer/sponsor from Fintech and Proptech companies, like AI, Website & SEO, Lead Gen Mgmt, and Consumer Financing, such as Agent Image, Quicken Loans, and Jetclosing.

What I liked about Day One, was the Speed Conference aspect of the General Sessions. 

There would be a panel of a few Professionals (Realtors, CEO’s, Lawyers, Coaches, etc), with a Moderator, and within the 15-30 minute interview, we would find out the Value of the people being interviewed, and how we can translate that into our Business Practices. 

The Sessions on Day 2 were especially interesting, with Brad Inman holding the ‘Godzilla’ Sized companies feet to the fire, and having some lively discussions about the future of real estate. 

His bottom line?

There will be Less Agents in the Future, and they will be Better. It will be a Seamless Process to Buy and Sell.

That being said, this article might get a little nerdy, so this is for you if you’re a Realtor, or if you’re interested in how Technologies are Enhancing the Future of How People Buy and Sell, what it looks like for the life of a Realtor (Bionic Agent), and other Insights on How the Evolving Future of Real Estate, Starts Now.

I find the Future of the Real Estate Industry Fascinating! I also care about Elevating our Profession (hence why I’m on the Board of Directors at the Realtors Association of Hamilton-Burlington), so I hope by sharing this content, my fellow Realtors will take some progressive insights, take ownership of their path, be better at their jobs, and be the Realtor of the Future! 

In Organized Real Estate, We Must Uphold and Adapt Standards, by Continually Learning and Sharing Ideas and Information, because after all, it is the Collective ‘Us’ that also has a seat at the table of reforming the real estate industry. 

I’m proud to representing the Realtors Association of Hamilton-Burlington at Inman!

To warm up the room of Agents (there was another room for Brokers with different speakers and sessions), we rallied a Top 10 List of what the Real Estate Sales Representative of Today, should look like. 

The Basics of what a Realtor should set themselves up with is, quite Basic. Do the things!

Top 10 Realtor Basic Needs


  • Recent Photo 
  • Promo Video 
  • Facebook Ads Manager 
  • Setup Profile on all Social Portals and have 10 reviews minimum 
  • Master CRM! 
  • Professional Photos of Listings
  • 3 Lead Gen sources 
  • Instagram Stories!
  • Defined Professional Brand. Logo 

Next, Let’s talk about the iBuyer Craze.

It woke the room up hearing these 2 Brokers Divergent views on iBuyers

John Gafford is the Broker/Owner of Simply Vegas Real Estate Brokerage. He was on the panel, and he put the ‘threat’ of these large iBuyer companies into a funny perspective… “You can’t get a little bit pregnant. It’s either a good idea or a bad idea”. 

He was of course speaking against Zillow, and doesn’t think it’s a good idea for Realtors, that these large, well funded companies going public, and shifting the power to the Consumer, while Realtors are still paying for the MLS data etc. He actually got some of the crowd cheering against Zillow and similar companies, when he spoke about them not working in the Realtors best interests.
The other panelist/Broker, Robin Smith, was more laid back and comfortable with her position as a Zillow partner. She explained that since she pays Zillow $X a month, she is a preferred partner, who gets leads, and closes them (aka helps people find a house and takes them through the Buying process, as a Realtor would). She loves being a Zillow partner and paying them for Quality Contacts, as she is a Quality Realtor. 

In Day Two, Rich Barton, CEO of Zillow reminds us Zillow only wants to work with the top 15% of Agents.

Realtors have the choice to work with tech companies like Zillow, with Big Data, and Big Money, who are creating new technology and resources for Consumers and the real estate industry or, we can continue harnessing our clients from other sources, like referral etc. and try to adapt with big players reaching the consumer first.

One thing is for sure, the Tech Giants cannot be can’t be ignored, and their market share is increasing as they win the mind of the Consumer. 

WTF *What the Fundamentals*

As a Realtor, we need to lay a good foundation to build a business. That goes with every Entrepreneurial Journey. The Real Estate Market is always shifting, so here are some Tips to stay on Track as a Real Estate Professional, as COO at Coldwell Banker Premier, Molly Hamrick put it.

  • Online leads have a 1-3% conversion. She thinks you should spend no more than 20% of your time on online leads, unless you have an intense social strategy.
  • Have fun with lead generation! Do what I like. Like Social? Do Social. Like Open Houses? Do it!
  • Never Stop Learning > Go to Real Estate Sessions and Conferences! Spend Money on Yourself and your Professional Development.
  • Do what works for you.
  • Be Genuine. With Marketing, Delivery, Client Services, in Everything you do!
  • 80/20 Rule.
  • Do the activities and the money will come. Just go to work, and treat it like a ‘Real Job’. Have some structure!
  • Deliver exceptional service. Don’t know what it looks like? Follow your Biggest Competitors!
  • Call 5 past clients a day, and you will have enough business and relationships to last a lifetime. 
  • Take 3 goals and do them 100% for 12 months 
  • Self analysis. Take a Good Look at Yourself as a Professional, and your Business and fill the gaps. Get a Coach to give you some Perspective!
  • Refine your processes. R&D! (Rip off and Duplicate)
  • Don’t be General with your Value Proposition. Be specific about what you and your brokerage offers (not just technology). Give people specific examples! 

Next up was a Smart Panel of Subject Matter Experts

Kofi Nartey is this Beverly Hills Real Estate ‘Sellebrity’, who’s had a great career from being an athlete, actor and real estate broker. Re-defining himself in a Niche, was his Key to Success. 

Insightful Reps from Qualia, Quicken loans and Agentlogy were also on the panel. 

They gave the room of Realtors some Great ideas to be the best Realtor in their Area!
There were some top agents in that room, so we were all ears on how to enhance our quality of business. 

    • They taught to Anticipate Client Needs. Be Proactive! Not Reactive. You will look like a pro if you know what they want. 
    • Redefine myself through Niche. Don’t be so General. What am I Pro at? Selling Waterfront Condos? Helping Downsizers? Narrow my Focus.
    • Have a strong point of view on the problems I’m solving. Care about something? Have a voice about it! If you believe in something, flaunt it.  
    • Engage. Qualify. Nurture leads. Always remember this ‘process’. Make dealing with people and Easy and Pleasant experience for them.
    • Conversations are the new leads. Win the Convo, Win the leads 
    • Dig into abundant info! On whatever topics interest me (something new I’m learning, Like country property or commercial, condo’s, downsizers, etc. They all have different needs…Anticipate the needs!)
    • Be the company I want to be in a year. Act that way. Think that way, TODAY.
    • Be the Subject Matter Expert. It forces you into a position of never ending self improvement, which is sure to pay off. 
    • Make the decision and Own it. Give myself the Grace, Time, and Opportunity to fail forward. I’ll succeed eventually, and naturally create filters to stay focused on my goal. Goal completion is in 3 years? That’s OK! Be Graceful about the Growing Process, and don’t be too hard on myself. Give myself the time I need to succeed. Success isn’t overnight. 
    • At the same time, Challenge Myself! Be harder on myself than anyone else will be. It’s MY life after all, and all part of the journey. My reactions = I’m only human. Be aware of how I react to Challenges, and embrace my strengths. Out Innovate Myself!
  • Figure out how to explain to people what I do in a compelling way. Don’t be a dud.
  • Constant self improve. Be obsessed with self improvement! Reflect on how I can improve. What are my opportunities?
  • Don’t Settle for Mediocrity. Level up my team constantly.
  • Get the Egos out of the way. Cause Nobody like someone with a big ego. Nobody.
  • The People who Win the Conversation, Win the Business


After Speaking to some Vendors and a bit of Lobby Con, I headed back to the Encore.

We Spent Dinner at Catch later that night. A Fabulous Seafood Restaurant in Aria! So Good!


Was the day we were all waiting for! Brad Inman spent the morning talking to the Big Wigs and keeping them accountable for their company’s decisions, as they try secure their places as the largest stakeholders in real estate. 

First, Brad gave us his ideas on the next year in Real Estate. 

This was my first time seeing Brad in action, and let me tell ya, he’s a little firecracker! I like him.. (questionable fashion choices though haha) Look how cute his face is!! He’s like the Real Estate Santa Clause of Information Lol

Brad started Inman News, many moons ago, which is a source for real estate industry news, and reports on all views of hot topics in our industry. 

Brad Inman:

“It’s about connecting the old and the new, and protecting the Realtor/Entrepreneur.”

We can’t be divided in the industry. 

His Advice?

Come together on Clarity of the Future, and the things we must change. 

The future is Pro Consumer!

We must Embrace Technology as Real Estate Professionals, and push the industry to do more.

Real Estate is a BIG industry! We’re in a moment in time that is a TOTAL game changer. The Walls are being Torn down of what gets in the way of buying and selling a house.”

“The process of selling a home is shitty”

Consumers are becoming loud mouths, and we need a Collective Awareness as Industry Professionals to hear their concerns and essentially make their lives easier. 

Brad said the Cooperation and Compensation lawsuit will bring sunshine and transformation to the industry. Keeping the Consumer in mind.

Who’s going to take the Reins on what comes next? Will it be the Courts? The Industry? The MLS Associations? Well-Funded Companies? 

We (Real Estate Professionals and Associations) Should do it before “they” do!!! 

Brad told us not to sit on our hands.

He says, Good news is Coming… It’s going to be an easier process to Buy and Sell a Home. 

Let’s Demand Transparency. 

It will be easier to do everything, and be a more efficient market.

Our industry will finally get Respect. 

The Future Real Estate Professional will Advise and Negotiate. 

We will be Appreciated for our Brains, Known for our Passion. Smart with Money. 

Who is taking the leadership role in our industry?

His Bottom Line?

Find Partners, and Keep Forward Moving!!!

Up next was ‘the’ Tech Guy from Inman.

Ah, it’s so bad we just call tech guy’s, the tech guy, eh? (or is it just me?)

Sorry Mike!

Mike Delprete is Inman’s Strategic Advisor/Real Estate Tech Advisor.

So, he’s a really important guy who blew some minds in the room! I think he had one of the best presentations of the day, entitled: Battle of the Bohemeth’s.

He was talking about the  “Big 4” Disrupters… Zillow. Open door. Redfin. Compass. 

Guess what? None are profitable.

Right now, they are all just buying market share. 

“Red is the new black” he says haha

(as of writing this, after the conference, Zillow Offers just announced losing over $3000 on average, on every transaction in Q1&Q2 2019)

Everyone needs a Competitive Advantage.

National iBuyer trends are increasing. They’re Growing in Numbers, but Bumpy. And Slowly.

Consumers start their journey at Zillow. It gives them power in the Ecosystem. They’re at the Centre. 

Consumers are then acknowledged as ‘Leads’. Zillow determines where the Leads go.

The thing is, Zillow doesn’t want to work with every agent. Just the best ones. And the One’s willing to Pay to Play.

Zillow’s competitive advantage is being the Consumers First Stop. 

Then, Open door then came in and started being the first stop. 

You see, iBuying is the new Zestimate.

People are going to dabble online, first, to have a starting point in their moving journey. Why not see what someone is willing to pay for your house?

There’s iBuyers, and traditional industry. There’s going to be overlap /intersection between the 2.

Brokers are now making a branded program to buy and sell homes themselves. 

And Yes, they still need a Person in the Process.

In Phoenix, 40% get an offer before they actually list. Big number! Why not get an offer? 

People are starting (to start) their search with iBuying.

It’s the start of the consumer journey, which used to only be a Realtor. Then Zillow came along powered by Zestimate. Then Open door, and people got an instant offer before calling Zillow or the Realtor. Then Zillow offered offers and agents. 

Now, Realtors are trying to be the first contact. Some are also trying to compete and offer to buy homes direct from consumers, like their bigger competition. Like this Agent is doing…

Sustained Unprofitability is the path these big companies are on.

They are making money, and spending it on consumers. 

Consumer Education is at a massive scale now. 

This is the Key Takeaway if we think about who wins in this space, because there’s a new depth to it. The companies and agents that win are going to be the ones that empower the consumers to win. 

Let’s ask ourselves as agents, brokers, associations.. What’s our opportunity in this?

Zillow’s, Rich Barton 

“Progress is provocative.”

Rich starts by saying that, Zillow isn’t The Disrupter anymore. They’re being disrupted and need to adapt. 

Zillow has a responsibility to the millions of users on their site, and of course, their investors. 

What is Zillow? They used to be just a media company. That’s changing into Zillow becoming what Google is to the Internet, and Facebook is to Social Media. 

(Rob Hahn wrote a good article about Zillow being the MLS..click here)

Zillow is Motivated by where the Shared Consumers want to go. 

Zillow isn’t Pivoting, they are Expanding.

They’re not getting rid of the old. 

What’s Coming? Real estate 2.0 innovations. 

Rich told us, their Goal is turning Agents into Super Agents, with Technology. 

He went on to say that technology has never eliminated humans. Every step of the technological advancement curve, humans become enhanced. Humans who know how to advance them with technology, win. 

Rich told us…”Just talk to customers and ask them their hopes and fears of buying a house. They need and want a trusted advisor. Not a paper shuffler.”

Zillow is licensed broker in most states because they can’t talk about offers unless they’re licensed.

They have ten of thousands of partners (aka agents) now, and say they will in 10 years. 

Zillow doesn’t want to work with everyone. Just cream of the crop. 

Like agents in that room, he said. We are the Bionic Agents! 

Now that Zillow has a track record, they realize they only want to work with the Top 15% of agents. More on that soon when Brad sits down with him..

Will Zillow become a brokerage with a sign in the lawn? Rich hesitated.

It sounded like it to me. (With their Zillow offers program, don’t they already have signs in the lawn?) 

That’s another way they’re expanding, Zillow Offers. Which not only lets you make an online offer, but Zillow is now partnering with top local tradespeople, to be a one stop shop for consumers where they can use Zillow partners to renovate, property manage, move, or if you just need a handyman.

(Zillow Offers is huge guys, this is what they’re up to; making an offer to Sellers before hitting the market, now having a lending company tied in. They are going for Consumer direct to Lender, using Zillow end to end transaction).

Rich said that viewing a Zillow owned home is much different than regular listing. 

How? To me that was unclear. He did say they would “Make it easy to arrange a tour”, (which I hope would be easy enough to do now, if agents were going their jobs).

Rich mentioned Incentives to Sell, for other (Buyer) agents. I’m interested in learning more what that’s about.

Zillow works closely with Realtors, and have their new Flex program for Agents where you pay Zillow 35% when you close their lead. 

What I do like about Zillow are the Tools they are Exploring, to Empower the industry.  Think Keyless locks etc. 

Zillow understands AI. Teaching computers to see. However, AI is not perfect, and you can’t do everything online. You still need to work with a Realtor. 

Zillow for example, is using AI to connect Consumers with Realtors that know about the area they’re looking in, at that moment (PPA, performance pacing algorithm). They’re also using AI to find the agents with the highest customer satisfaction ratings, to join their FLEX program. This is important because in the Old Zillow, the customer would choose the agent. In the New Zillow, Zillow chooses the agents to match with consumers.

Side Note: I think, The Flex program will likely lead to less agents. Why? Because Zillow likes working with teams (they have systems to make the process better for the consumer), Zillow will give more leads to teams, which yes, in turn will reduce the number of single agents (except perhaps the strong ones who have a good network of referrals and other lead sources feeding them). This is because real estate is a net-zero sum. If a Zillow agent takes a listing, that’s a listing NOT going to another agent. The more market share Zillow creates for their agents, the less business other agents will do. 

Rich was right about one thing… Consumers have a new way of Buying and Selling. 

Rich said, maybe people don’t even have the tour the house in person because the online filtering process is getting better. 

How does Zillow make Realtors lives easier, not just the consumer?

They understand that House Shopping is Entertainment. Let’s face it, people Waste Agents time. Now, with intense online details, Consumers can waste their own time. 

They can Redecorate, Paint, and basically Customize the Property through Zillow. 

Rich says it’s the most exciting time in real estate innovation. And he’s not wrong!

After Rich tried to put our minds to ease with Zillow being on ‘our side’ (rather then totally being the Consumer advocate), he sat down with Brad Inman to get grilled 🙂 

Stratechory- Interview with Rich Barton. 

Zillow is the Elephant in the room, who Empowered Consumers. 

They showed up with an audience, and they’re helping agents along the way, with providing opportunities for online leads. 

They have a low percentage of asset base turnover every year. 

Brad asked… If a few companies are controlling the industry, do you think this is Dangerous? 

Rich replied… Zillow wants to provide liquidity to a market that’s frozen. (He’s talking about Zillow Buying Homes). It’s not Zillow’s goal to make money on increasing value of the asset (or decrease).

Zillow has all the data. Like Predicting House Prices. 

Rich says, Zillow doesn’t want to own hundreds of thousands, or millions of homes. 

They want to be a Market Maker. 

“The transaction is the fulcrum point, and there’s lots of ancillary.”

Yes, Zillow is moving into commission world. 

They are now taking a 35% referral fee!

It’s part of their “Flex Program” and their calling it a “Success Fee”

So, rather than paying Zillow up front, the Agent has to prove they can do the deal first. 

Something else they touched on was Government Intervention.

“Nobody is bigger than the government”

We are Moving out of Starry Eyed Internet Phase of Evolution.  

The Internet is Fundamental and we need to grow up. 

Bottom Line from Rich?

It’s a New World for Zillow as they now Own Homes, Write mortgages and Collect info from people. Aka Data!

Even with growing competition, Zillow is still the start of the Consumer search.

Rich Barton’s honesty in this interview was quite refreshing.. He no longer claims to be only a media company, or never becoming a broker or owning commissions. He seemed forthcoming, like they know they’re the lion in the kingdom, and they’re getting ready to really roar. He no longer needs to make false promises of things they’re not going to do in the future, and own the fact they have the Most Data, the Most Mindshare, and the Most Money backed by Wall St & Investors. They are becoming less apologetic, as they start losing less money. 

Get Ready people! Zillow could be the Future of Real Estate. 

Rich, just remember that Big Data, comes with Big Responsibility.

Molly’s game 

What a Badass Chick Molly is!

Pro Skier, until Scoliosis/ski accident called for Spinal Surgery… then started serving the High Roller Underground Poker Scene, Making money (avoiding jail time), There’s got to be something we can learn from these, questionable decisions… right?

She made a movie about her life that I’m looking forward to watching!

Turns out, she wasn’t just there for entertainment.

This is what Molly taught me about ‘Playing the Game’…

Understand the player. Aka as Realtors, we need to Understand, our Consumer. 

For her, it wasn’t about about poker, is was about the Community, the Experience, and Networking. 

When Molly was serving these ballers, she would Memorize details about their lives. Why? Because people like to feel special! We should do the same for our Clients. 

Everyone should Believe in the Power of Experiences. That’s how you Grow.

In Molly’s case, she Learned her Lessons by Losing her Moral Compass. I’m not sure I would recommend that to people, haha, but she was right when she said we MUST believe in the choices we make. 

Believe in my unique story. To do that, It takes Confidence and Fearlessness. 

At the end of the day, I have to like who I am. 

So work on my character, and be honest with myself.

We will always have fear in our brains. We need to learn how to override it. 

So take some time for Self Care!

Molly recommends meditating for 20 minutes a day. Redirect thoughts to your breath, and Learn to Tell my Mind what to do. Not the other way around.

One thing Molly said we need is….  Hope.

Because Success in life, takes Guts, and Heart. 

You don’t know how strong you are until you’re faced with something. Molly pulled through and believed in herself. She made it through the 2 toughest times of her life – overcoming multiple back surgeries, and running the largest poker ring in the United States (and getting threatened by the Mob)..

Her final thoughts?

The Real Estate Business is Changing and Evolving. 

The Power of taking Responsibility, is my Choice. I must Own my Decisions! It will move me to the Next Level. 

Always Move forward, no matter what bullshit life gives you.

There’s a Power of Pivoting!!! Re Branding is Extraordinary. You just need Vision. 

The Power of Vision will enable you to cast your business and life in a new direction. 

Thanks Molly. Thank you for reminding us that we can overcome anything in our lives, so long as we Believe in ourselves, and Care about Others.

Next up…

Glenn Kelman from Redfin!

What a quirky, high energy dude he is.

Quite a presence on stage, and hard to not pay attention to. He’s got a lot going on!

Firstly, he’s trying to Create the “Next Generation of Agents”

Industry Attrition is increasing. It’s becoming Harder, not Easier to become an Agent. 

In a massively changing industry, it’s important to note that:

The Average age of Agent is over 50. 

The Average age of Home Buyers (in America) is 32. 

As Realtors, we have a mission to stand by people, when their whole family is in transition. 

I hear that Glenn!

He goes on to say, the MLS is a database of Realtors, and where they hang their license. Not just database of homes. 

Glenn asks, Are we paying Agents enough? He doesn’t think we should limit income growth.

He does understand the New Generation of Home Buyers. They’re Challenged by Affordable Housing Crisis. 

He also gets that there’s a lot of looky loos.

The Worst Customers? 

I had to chuckle when he said, Millennials. It’s not just his opinion, the survey says!

Who’s easiest to do business with? 

As Follows:

Gen x 52% 

Baby boomers 25% 

Millennials 23% 

When you’re a Realtor, we do A LOT of work for free. In fact, everything is a volunteer task, hoping it all works out and we get paid. A huge component to that is a Free Home Evaluation. I’m sure you’ve heard of that, and as a Realtor, you can appreciate how much time goes into researching a home, that you never end up selling (possibly to no fault of your own). 

Glenn says when we give these FREE CMA’s, there is No sense of Emotional Debt. True that Glenn!

As Redfin, if the Customer is abusive. (Yes, it happens), they Can’t work with Redfin. 

In other news..

  • Most Realtors Report Commissions Staying Stable. 
  • The Internet has Increased Customer Acquisition cost. 
  • Agents think it’s fine to pay more if you get more. 

Glenn thinks, If you choose an entrepreneurial life, we should be getting paid more!

Starting a career in Real Estate isn’t easy, because you don’t earn income for 6-12 months, so it makes it harder to become a Realtor if you don’t come from a wealthy place.

He also thinks Real Estate is a Racist Industry. White people work with white people, and it affects where Buyers end up buying. 

Realtors Must make sure the Internet works for us, not against us.

Now, Brad takes the helm and guides the conversation with Glenn. 

And gets right into it!

Brad: What is Redfin now? What is redfin direct? 

Glenn: Redfin Now, will be an iBuying business in 3 years. This will be Redfin’s Crucial Competitive Advantage. 

Redfin now buys house and uses brokerage to sell it. 

Brad: Is instant market offer a big deal? 

Glenn: First, Sellers will want an instant offer before going to the market with a Listing Agent. 

Redfin is not going to buy 15% of the homes for sale. They can’t afford it! Glenn says.

There is a Housing Shortage (Massively, in North America!) and Lenders and Government don’t seem concerned about it. 

I’ve got to agree with Glenn on this one, there is a massive housing shortage. 

It wasn’t clear to me how Redfin was going to solve that problem, but at least they are acknowledging the crisis.

Now, for Redfin Offer info…I kept open ears to Glenn’s honesty and loft ambitions.

Mostly, Redfin cooperates with the other brokerages. (Aka Pays the Buyers Agent).

Naturally, if you’re an agent and don’t list the house on the MLS, and keep it as an exclusive listing, more offers are going to be from unrepresented Buyers. Also remember, Fiduciary is to the Seller! 

Buyers who are starting their search online, rather than with an Agent, are more likely to end up with the Listing agent, (Who cannot represent the Buyer properly, because the fiduciary is to the Seller.
That’s why Buyers should always have their own Agent, to trust, and complete due diligence). 

Here’s where I might need some clarity on their vision with this idea…

When Redfin agents are ‘too busy’, they send it to another brokerage, and get paid a referral fee. Glenn says it’s a small portion of business, but let’s Redfin Agents stay sane…

REMAX has the lowest attrition. They’re The Best Agents! That’s why Redfin chose to partner with REMAX to be their ‘partner brokerage’.

However, when Redfin tried to use REMAX Agents in Canada, it failed.

Because, there are ‘Differences in Values’ between Redfin and REMAX..


What does Glenn think is in store for the Future of Real Estate?

  • Buyers are going to Realize that Buyer Agents aren’t Free. It’s an Easy Convo to have with Sellers, but Harder with Buyers. This may Save Sellers more Money and Buyers less Money. 
  • Redfin is scared of Zillow. They have So0o0o0o much money!
  • People want advice. That’s the Future of Real Estate.

What’s Redfins Long term plan? Mortgage, Title, iBuying. 

Redfin thinks they can Close Faster so they can Sell Faster. 

However, their Profit and Loss statement is groaning getting these things humming! 

They are Losing more Money, and Taking More Risk.

Let’s see how they play with others in the next few years. 

At these conferences, we must remember to Create an Action List. 

What am I going to do with the Information I’m learning today?

What will move the needle in my business and life?

Debra Trappen was up next. 

She Spoke about How to Stay Solid with Change Coming. (Because if there’s one thing I learned this week, it was that Change is Coming!)


First of all, Don’t think Small. Don’t be comfortable. 

Ask Yourself: How do I personally deal with change? 

Be aware of if it affects you directly or indirectly. 

Always have:

Courage. Persistence. Curiosity. 

Create a curiosity mindset that I never want to let go of!

Let curiosity be my guide. 


  • Write down my vision. 
  • Embrace being uncomfortable. 
  • Empower myself during the process by slowing down and asking myself what I want. Where do I want to be? What do I want to do? 

My confidence will awaken when I step into my truth!

So ask yourself..

What do I want More or Less of? 

What does success mean to me? Define my version of success 


Start focusing on and Collaborating with others. 

Demon is Comparison! In this world, you need Temperament and Grace. 

So, Embrace Empathy. 

Slow down before we Comment.

And, Be Better to each other. 

Shame off of me!


Buy a book on emotional intelligence and build that muscle. 

As a Realtor, I need to guide people through change by listening, and don’t judge. 

Look at fear From a different direction. That Failures Lead to Successes.

So, in the face of Adversity, ask yourself: 

Can you live with it? Can you recover from it? 

Fear less. 

Go through the process of Mourning what I Lost, and Celebrate what I Gain. 

Self talk is the most important!

Bottom line: I can control my thoughts. 

Opendoor was Next on the Ballot

Erik Wu, the CEO of Opendoor, enlightened us to his Consumer friendly Business Model. 

Opendoor ‘Created the iBuyer’.

They are Learning about Buying Houses, and Creating Websites. 

Erik’s Frugality in Investment Experience is actually quite comical. His mother is so cheap, she re-uses her bathwater to water her plants! Haha. So he comes from a world of conservation. 

He told us to Never Underestimate Opportunity Size. Especially the ideas in Real Estate happening.

Right now, he thinks Buying and Selling a Home is a Painful Experience for Consumers. 

His Vision is the same as the others. Build a fluid and frictionless housing market. 

Eric thinks if we can Reduce Friction, and Lower the Cost, More people will do it. 

Yes Eric, we know, it’s a Massive Life Disruption to Move. 

So, he says that Moving fast is Advantageous. 

He harped that Consumers want Tips on Demand. 

We need to use Software and Processes to be Successful.

There are More Synergies between Open door and Redfin. (in Atlanta and Phoenix)

They’re giving consumers more choices. 

We need to Understand Consumer Needs. They want Lower prices and Convenience. 

Eric also mentioned that iBuyers could be dirty and corrupt, so Sellers need to make the right choice. 

Give options to fit consumers needs perfectly. 

Some choose to list with an agent, so we need to Be an Advisor. 

Opendoor wants Consumer mind share. 

Consumers price shop. Educate choices! More then just traditional path. 

In order to build a great company it’s all the hard work behind the scenes. 

Combine software and offline processes. 

Opendoor’s goal of owning inventory, is to Control the Experience and Raise Expectations. 

They want to enable people to Sell and Trade at the tap of a button. 

Eric wants to Build an elegant, on demand home shopping experience. Not just a first act. Or a second act. Creating a home shopping Experience.

End to end. A Seamless Transaction. 

It’s not easy (to connect the process), but it’s a good result.

Listen to What the Consumer Wants. Solve their Pain Points. 

In the future, Opendoor wants to Provide for consumers, a One click move. 

Yes, Opendoor is 3.5 billion in debt. 

Eric Wu’s Vision is to Invent New Experiences for Consumers (like with Lending).

What does he think about the Future of the Real Estate Agent? “The Role of an Agent isn’t going anywhere… within 10 years”

We are essentially Project Managers.

We are Real Estate Advisors, and Value is Created with providing Expert Advice.

Buying or Selling a Home is a Huge decision!! People Need Expert Advice, Local Expertise, and Financial Advice. We need to be informed, so we can help people do what’s best for their life.

Jay Papasan from Keller Williams was up next!

And how cool was it to sing Happy Birthday to him in a room packed full of people?!

Jay is all about Career opportunities and Business opportunities.

He is the co-Author the Millionaire Real Estate Agent, and head of Keller Williams publishing, with Gary Keller.


Jay jumped right into it and was Speaking to the Pro’s of being a Real Estate Salesperson/ Agent/ Broker.

1) Lowest cost of entry for self employed opportunity. 

Step into lead flow

2) No financial ceiling 

Entrepreneurial spirit is amazing! 

Check out the Real trends list for people who have excelled.

Margins are being squeezed in the real estate profession, but there’s an opportunity to run a business.He goes on to say, there’s not many opportunities like this! 

3) Freedom to choose your work. 

Listing agent. Buyers agent. Beach homes etc I can work in areas I love. I get to choose!

Be a sales manager! Don’t even meet the Buyer and Sellers.

Choose Narrowly and Master it. Rewards at highest level


4) Flexibility of Schedule. 

When u choose Fewer Hours you need to Prioritize 

Wanna work 9-2? Go to the office and work!!!! 


5) High Financial Return for Effort Given. 

We get rewarded based on effort and results. Not time worked. We will always be rewarded for our Hard Work.  


6) Inside Opportunities to Invest 

We as Agents, should also be investors! On your listing appointments ask yourself; Should I buy this property or should I List it? 

Fiduciary duty is OK! We can Offer Market Value. It’s the Sellers Choice. 

As Realtors, We know Value, because we know the Market; we go on showings and see what’s available. We see the abnormalities when they show up, like if something is Undervalued. It’s our choice to take it. 


7) We get to Help People with their Greatest Asset. 

We don’t need to focus on making it more Liquid. Home is Firstly Shelter. Then a forced savings plan. With Opportunity for Appreciation. 

People think it’s an anxious process of moving. People move Approx every 7 years. 

Even when Home Values took a Big Hit, there’s still a Huge Gap between Home Owning, and Renting. Homeowners (over 65) hold more equity then renters by more than 48X!

8) Best Voyeur Job. 

We see some shit! Haha 

We get to Snoop people’s homes and see some crazy stuff and write a story of what’s happening. There’s never a dull moment!! 

Jay Papasan believes Being a Realtor is The Greatest Business Opportunity! 

Our Job:
  • Start our job with Lead Gen
  • List Properties
  • Manage the Sale
  • Admin Work
The Key?
Leverage myself out of every job. 

Turn a Job into a business pure process of delegation. 

Start as a job. 

2) Low Capital Investment. High Cash Flow Business. 

We need to be Enthusiastic 

We have a chance to make it better for Next Generation. 

Champion this business! 

What is happening with the Real Estate Market? 

by Dolly and Pat 

Right now, North America is experiencing the Largest Transfer of Wealth in History. Baby Boomers giving Money to Millennials 

Biggest surge in first time home buyers. 

The demand for affordability offset a bit by the wealth transfer (for those lucky enough)

As Realtors, we should Be optimistic!

We have demand. 

Affordability issues? Yes 

It’s still a Good time to be a Realtor, as  people are moving away from big cities and to secondary cities (like Hamilton & Burlington, from Toronto)

Less foreign home buyers = More affordable = More opportunities 

They taught us to Stay Positive, Be Aware of Demographic shifts, and Look out for Opportunities


At one of my favourite restaurants in Vegas… Mon Ami Gabi!

Our Fish and Champagne was Incredible… My mouth waters just thinking about how tasty their food is!

We came back to the Conference and my Amazing Broker of Record Conrad Zurini was on the Canadian Real Estate Panel, Educating Fellow Agents of the changes and ideas he’s implementing as a Broker of over 600 Agents.

The other panelists were from Alberta, British Columbia, and Toronto, which all shed light on different problems they’ve been facing in their markets, like ban of duel agency, foreign home buyer tax, etc.

I was also lucky to run into some fellow Canadians, like the TREB president elect, Lisa Patel, and some Board of Directors on other boards in the GTA.

From being on the ‘Canadian Organized Real Estate Conference’ for a couple of years, I meet friends along the way, while our terms overlap, and Bradley is one great person I have met throughout the years. An aspiring young father, rock start Realtor, and Director on OREA, and multiple Committees. It’s always a pleasure to see you Brad, and Happy Birthday!

After thoughts…

As an Inman Select Member, I have access to the Videos from the Inman Conference. 

(By the way, if you are a Realtor, Inman is worth the $28 a month for industry news!)


I listened to an interview that was done at Inman with Patricia Nakache, who is a general partner at Trinity Ventures

Venture backed companies are gunning for growth.

VC are just getting started

5X returns

Under 5M buy in’s decreasing

Rounds of 25M and above going up, generally getting bigger. Playing out in Prop Tech as well. 

Driven by MegaFunds of course (Softbank). 

Investors at the heels.

Disruption or tools to brokerage model…

Battle over the future of the brokerage is where the excitement is happening. 

Moving from one size fits all, to more tailored solutions that meet customer segment needs (iBuyers for Convenience, Discount brokerage for value service model, Full-Service Brokerage models)

Still evolving with better solutions for rental apartments, roommate matching and build communities around that. Helping Buyers with cash offers, rent to own, Sale lease back

Merge with Brokerage and FinTech!

Another Takeaway from the Conference…

*The Full Scope of Shred Media Strategy includes 6 Simple Steps*

  • Step 1: Record 4 vertical videos from your phone (1-3 minutes each)
  • Step 2: Post the 1st video to your business page
  • Step 3: Wait 24 hours, then run an ad or boost for video views
  • Step 4: Target a radius of 25-35 miles around where you conduct business
  • Step 5: Run video ad for $1-$2 per day over a week
  • Step 6: Rinse, Repeat for all videos
  • Bonus Step: Profit
  • Social Media: Comment, comment and comment some more. Facebook algorithms will like you for connecting.
  • Flash briefings are the way to go. Up to 10 minutes of content for people to listen to on their Amazon Alexa
  • Watch Time is important. You need to captivate people in 5-6 seconds. Make it visual and get to the point.
  • Swipe Up feature is available on instagram, even if you have less then 10k followers. Just make your story with the swipe up feature, and ad, for as little as $1 a day!
  • Teamwork makes the Dreamwork. Bring your team to conferences, and if you don’t have one, make sure your clients know who your backup is. Teams are the way of the future. 

So that was that!

I went to Inman, and I learned that Technology is going to make our professional, and personal lives more streamlined in the Future, and we need to choose how ‘Us’, in Organized Real Estate, want to move forward with our MLS Property Rights, Communication, Transparency, Technology, and make our place in the Future of Real Estate.

There are lawsuits that are changing the Real Estate Profession, and some turn out great, like reforming our REBBA 2002, Rules for Realtors in Ontario. We need to do More then just Promote Ethics, and the MLS data on the Association side. On the Brokerage side, Brokers need to be Competitive now more then ever with making Realtors lives easier, and providing value. Because just like Consumers, Realtors want Everything for Nothing. The Good News is, the Technology is going to make it easier for them to translate their Value Proposition, they just need to figure out what that is 🙂


I hope to see you at the Next Conference!

Rob Hahn, Greg Robertson, Carlos Gil, I will catch you all next time!

This is a green website. Stephanie Pinet has planted
trees so far. Hosted on a renewable energy server.