Coming Soon to the PC Screen…..Real Estate Agent Rankings by Customers

Times are a ‘changing.

Soon it will be even more difficult for non-professionals to maintain a career in the Real Estate industry, helping buyers and sellers of property.

The new Real Agents Act 2008 has been introduced by the NZ Government, and becomes law in November this year.

It will introduce longer training/qualifying periods before an individual can earn a Real Estate Salesperson’s Certificate and can actively help clients.

It will also herald other changes like a 24hr cooling off period and a maximum agent listing authority period of 90 days.

However in related news Bloglines alerted me yesterday via the Official Google Blog that they, Google have quietly gone about launching a new toolbar with an interesting side feature. An Australian Site I follow has already this morning deciphered how good this could be for the industry. Sort of continuing the “hyper-local” nature of search that seems to be all the buzz lately.

Its not exactly new news by itself, because many other sites, like RealEstateRatingz for example have been down this path already. For a good primer this Realtor article appeared in the US earlier this year.

Giving customers a chance to rate the agent based on the service provided.

Now it will always be said that the level of “expectation of service” can be very different between individuals.

Again that “level” needs to be ascertained in advance from the client by the Agent. This then sets the minimum benchmark level, and for the relevant individual its the expectation spot from where they view following events as either in a good or bad light.

They have been doing this in the States for some time now………………

We see those in the UK are doing it…….

Like this site

Who make it very easy on the front landing page to see a list of the Best Rated and right alongside that, the Worst Rated Estate Agents.

There are others, but many seem to suffer from that great big bin on the Internet, that is they are hot one moment, then have no activity for years. Others seem to suffer from a decidedly noticable lack of volume in their ratings………take the top realtor above – with just 3 reviews?

Although some like ….

seem to have regular updates and offer at least a hint as to the sort of properties generally handled by a particular agent – although a range of $219k to $2.5m isn’t really specific enough to really indicate if the agent has any specialities relevant to properties priced in your neighbourhood.

And with typical US competitiveness Homethinking also offer this…………..

Even our friends across the ditch have tried it, albeit with an emphasis on the agency / location rather than a specific salesperson.

And here in NZ there is offering a rating service. Their used to be but nobody seems home there now.

So now to the party, entering from stage left, comes the 300lb Gorillia.

Yes Google is here to help again.

Sidewiki will enable people to leave relevant comments, and share entries via Blogger, Facebook, Twitter and Google profiles. More than ever before agents will have to get online and be more transparent than they even thought they would need to be. Check out Business2’s post here for more info.

It looks like another stride in Googles “power to the people” march forward.

And you can try it out yourself for free by going here.

0 thoughts on “Coming Soon to the PC Screen…..Real Estate Agent Rankings by Customers

  1. avatarRoss Brader

    It’s already here!

    Of course the Real Estate Agents Authority will also have a Register of Licensees that is available to the public, to enable you to make an informed decision when choosing a real estate agent, branch manager or salesperson. You will be able to check whether the person you are considering dealing with is licensed find out how to contact the agent, branch manager or salesperson, check the history of the person’s licence, check the disciplinary record of an agent, branch manager or salesperson.

  2. avatarSteve Taylor

    Your blog was independent from my blog, but it is on the same subject, customers happiness/unhappiness.

    Clued up agents will get their clients to go online and praise them up, which will skew the results against agents who are doing a good job, but are not so cheeky.

  3. avatarDavid Leggott

    Interesting site, guess what I’m alluding to is that once you have sidewiki loaded via that Google toolbar, then the moment you travel to a certain URL any relevant info will pop up on the sidebar…….sort of seamless really – you don’t have to go to a specific site.

  4. avatarDavid Leggott

    I think that in the future younger generations will increasingly seek answers or referral type info via the web. Ultimately yes, many agents may find they need to have, or at leas update an online profile or presence.
    Witness the social media that younger geenrations are taking to. Look at Wikipedia for a great example. Wikianswers is another.
    Like I remember not that long ago people in the retail industry not wanting to use computers, especially members of the older generation. Think how far that attitude would get you today?

  5. avatarDavid Leggott

    A second and possibly more important thing to consider is Googles push into Real Estate with its mapping initiatives. Wouldn’t take much for them to start aggregating stuff would it?