corelogic logo When you dominate an industry by market share as CoreLogic does in real estate, there are certain adjectives that become elusive. One of them is “innovative.” That’s because Conventional Wisdom in real estate says that when it comes to tech firms, it’s only the ones with the shiniest and newest objects – run by the new kids on the block – that are deemed innovative. Certainly, it’s not a word typically used to describe a company founded in the early 1990s.

Yet about 10 days ago, something remarkable happened in the City of San Francisco, one of the bastions of innovation, during the Inman News Real Estate Connect Conference at a red carpet gala. CoreLogic, born a quarter of a century ago, won the coveted 2016 Inman Innovator Award for “Most Innovative Real Estate Company.”

According to Inman News, its Innovator Awards “are given each year to recognize and celebrate industry innovation and accomplishments.” Inman reports that its innovation honors can be given to a “specific app, technology or business process that qualifies someone for consideration.” In other cases, the company as a whole consistently tries new things, adopts new technology or creates a new culture or approach to real estate.

Getting ahead of the curve

Conventional wisdom proved to be wrong because CoreLogic, once thought of as part of the industry’s old guard, has pivoted in a major way, leapfrogging its competition. Not only did it earn honors as the top innovator among a list of blue-chip candidates that included Move, Realogy, Keller Williams, Zillow and Leading RE, but it also won the top spot over some of the hottest startups, including Xome, Open Door, Smart Zip, Real and a dozen more firms who have invented some of the shiniest new objects available today.

Moreover, Trestle, from CoreLogic, was named a 2016 Inman Innovator Awards runner up in the “Most Innovative Technology” category. What’s incredible about this feat is the fact that the product isn’t being released until the fall. Trestle is the much talked about national marketplace that connects data sources with data recipients. It is designed to address key pain points that real estate brokers, technology providers, and multiple listing organizations struggle with today. Clearly, the impact of this technology on the real estate industry is expected to be massive.

Year of Innovation

“This truly is the ‘Year of Innovation’ for CoreLogic,” said Chris Bennett, general manager of real estate solutions for CoreLogic, after winning the honors. “We listened to our clients and worked hard to improve how property intelligence is delivered to consumers, brokers and technology vendors. The result is Trestle and ePropertyWatch, and I believe both innovations will have deep and long-lasting impact on the real estate industry. We are honored to win this award and give full credit to the Trestle and ePropertyWatch product teams.”

What’s exciting about CoreLogic being described as an “Innovator” is the repercussions: they should inspire “traditional” real estate firms to also rethink and reinvent themselves.  They should, like CoreLogic, begin with RESO standards.

Impact of RESO
If you haven’t been paying close attention, RESO is quietly enabling a lot of this new innovation, when you dig into the details. The once sleepy Real Estate Standards Organization has gotten an incredible amount of traction in the last 18 months or so. Their impact is going to be amplified by industry innovators and innovations, such as CoreLogic and Trestle.

For example, Trestle will help MLS firms improve control and management of their listing data relationships. It will marry listing data with access to CoreLogic property data, deliver access to its prized automated valuation content, and the company reports will aggregate “national listing data into a single repository certified by the Real Estate Standards Organization (RESO). “

Kevin Greene, senior director of strategic partnerships and new initiatives at CoreLogic, puts it this way: “While Trestle will help MLSs achieve RESO certification with data standardization to distribution control, contract management, and fee processing, Trestle will also provide real estate brokers a single source for all their listing data, as well as access to proprietary CoreLogic property content,” said “For technology providers, Trestle will offer access to a national data source and the opportunity for greater innovation.”

Winning by innovating

CoreLogic is in a winning position because they are data-centric and are innovating to create easier to use tools for agents and brokers around leveraging this data in new ways.  Green points to the new innovations of CoreLogic powered ePropertyWatch, which gives real estate brokers and agents the ability to deliver monthly “neighborhood intelligence” reports to clients together with up-to-date home valuations powered by the industry-leading CoreLogic automated valuation model (AVM).

What’s emerging from all of this is a clear signal that something old can become something new. The shiniest, newest object can’t top a better innovation, no matter where that innovation comes from and that better inventions are not limited by age.