June 5th was an interesting day in Washington, DC for the real estate industry. The Federal Trade Commission and Department of Justice held a workshop to gain insight on the competitive environment in real estate.
There are three videos about the workshop that can be viewed as a refresher for:
While there has been much written and discussed about this workshop, one task remains, and it expires on Tuesday.
As practitioners who compete every day in world of real estate, it is critical to provide insights to the FTC of how the industry’s competitive landscape has been over the last 10 years.
The below is the website page the FTC has provided for the public to comment about the real estate industry.
Type of insights the FTC may desire for their review.
When contemplating your “request for public comment” to the FTC, the following are a few questions to aid in organizing your thoughts:
- Are there more or less barriers for new business models to compete in the selling and buying of homes today than 10 years ago?
- Do consumers have more or less real estate information today than 10 years ago?
- Are consumers requesting more information when researching to buy or sell a home than what is available today?
- Will easier access and free flow of real estate information make the industry better and more competitive?
Every day brokerages and MLSs confront the competitive environment of providing services to their consumers. FTC is shaded to some of these realities and comments from practitioners offers a deeper comprehension of how competitive the real estate industry has become over the last 10 years.
My partner at the WAV Group, Marilyn Wilson Lund, wrote an article just prior to the workshop in June, “5 Key Takeaways in Preparation for the FTC/DOJ Workshop”. Her research identified that over the last 10 years, the industry has re-invented itself in its response to consumer needs and wants, and in a fair and competitive landscape (link to the report).
Has the availability of the information made the industry better? Absolutely! Is there more to do? Of course, there is more to do, and the industry is engaged with initiatives such as RESO, Upstream and The MLS Grid concept to improve the availability and quality of data.
On the other hand, the industry does have its actors who do misbehave. They do hoard data, make the process to gain access to data extremely difficult, or do not abide to policies for data standards. It is here where the industry needs to take a stand before others decide to take its own actions.
Please take a few moments and participate to convey the realities brokerages and MLSs have competing in today’s real estate market.