SAN FRANCISCO – When Glenn Kelman took the stage at the Inman News Real Estate Connect conference in San Francisco this morning, he was out to dispel some myths about Redfin’s position, and talk about what he believes makes the Seattle-based real estate company special.
“We don’t just handle the search for pretty pictures of a house on the web, we do the whole frickin’ thing,” Kelman said.
According to Kelman, Redfin agents are three to four times more productive than the average real estate agent, and they make roughly double the industry average. In order to do that, Kelman said the company spends a lot of time and money supporting its agents with tweaks to its site.
Sometimes, small tweaks are all that it takes to get a big result. Adding a tab on the home page that said “Sell my home” increased the number of homeowners reaching out to Redfin about selling a home by 54 percent.
In addition, Kelman said that the company is seeing more and more customers interested in visiting a property on the same day they look it up. In some cases, they even end up calling an agent while they’re standing right outside a house they’re viewing on Redfin.
What the company has found is that having an agent available immediately is an important part of getting deals done, even if a customer has worked with another agent in the past.
“Even if you’ve worked with an agent in the past, you’d rather work with an agent who can get you into the house right now.”
To handle showings, Redfin has a system that keeps all of its agents’ calendars in the same place, so it’s possible for them to coordinate showing a property. The company also uses Twilio to pass phone calls off to other agents in the event one person is unavailable to take a call.
Kelman’s comments come less than a month after Redfin unveiled its “Hot Homes” feature, which is designed to give prospective homebuyers an idea of how long a property will take to sell.