Swathy Prithivy, Opendoor; Janelle Alacantara, Galaxy Modern; Candy Evans, CandysDirt.com; Becky Frey, Compass; Alex Doubet, Door; and Beth Johnson, Keller Williams (Photo courtesy Dallas Builders Association).

I had the privilege of moderating a panel stuffed to the gills with creative, talented real estate professionals yesterday at the Dallas Builders Association’s luncheon. The panel, featuring some of the top disruptors in the industry, had a lively discussion with one overarching theme: there’s room for everyone in this new playing field for the real estate industry.

Panelists included Swathy Prithivy of Opendoor, Janelle Alcantara of Galaxy Modern, Becky Frey of Compass, Door founder Alex Doubet, and Beth Johnson of Keller Williams. It was a fascinating discussion, with several juicy takeaways. Namely, Doubet predicted that the data indicates that at some point, the last vestiges of traditional model of real estate will disappear. If that’s not a clarion call for the industry, I don’t know what is!

The three full-service Realtors — Alcantara, Frey, and Johnson — stressed that while they felt there is a need for all three models presented at the panel — full service, iBuyer, and flat fee — there will always be a need for a good Realtor that knows the turf, has intimate knowledge of what is selling there regardless of whether it was on MLS or not, and that will advocate for their client.

To get all the best tidbits from these ground-breaking movers and shakers, view the video from our live broadcast now: 

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Clockwise from left: Candy Evans; Alex Doubet, Door; Swathy Prithivi, Opendoor Dallas-Fort Worth; Janelle Alcantara, Galaxy Modern; Beth Johnson, Keller Williams; and Becky Frey, Compass.

… but the flu is going around, so who knows, a seat or two at our Thursday panel on disruption in real estate may open up.

That is terrible! Shame on me!

But truthfully, I went to the doctor today and (a) I do not have the flu but (b) everyone else does. Seriously, it’s the worst flu season ever STILL!

We are so excited about this Disruption event, brought to you by the Dallas Builders Association, and I knew it would fill up fast. Happy to report it is sold-out. But we’ll be live-streaming on Facebook, so if you do get the flu, or could not get a ticket, you can still check us out.

Also, I am not going to waste time rattling off bios: everyone can just read them here. Reading the bios here on CandysDirt.com saves us valuable debate time! And debate we will!

Questions you would like to ask the panelists? The comments section is WIDE OPEN, so fire away! Or ping me. Jump now for the profiles of our distinguished panelists …

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Have you ever wanted to ask Alex Doubet of Door what motivates him? Or how he keeps the lights on? What is OpenDoor really about and how much do they charge sellers? Why did so many tip-top agents flock to Compass? Is it possible to sell your home online now? How big are the iBuyers, really? 

Get the inside scoop on how brokers, both big and small, new and old, are reinventing the way homes are bought and sold at the Dallas Division Realtor Panel on Thursday, Feb. 7, 11:30 a.m. at Maggiano’s NorthPark. This realtor panel will include Becky Frey, Compass; Janelle Alcantara, David Griffin & Co. Realtors, Founder of Galaxy Modern; Alex Doubet, Door; Beth Johnson, Keller Williams Realty; and Swathy Prithivi at Opendoor. 

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I’m sure you caught the Dallas Morning News‘ recent declaration that the start-up discount brokerage Door, while on a tear, is not yet really fully disrupting the buying and selling of real estate.

At least not here, not yet. I’m off to Inman in San Francisco, so let’s talk next week.

But it’s interesting that the DMN even wrote about a topic that once might have seemed too “B to B” for a consumer newspaper. This confirms the vibes I got at NAREE last month: the consumer is now keenly aware of the changes in the Real Estate industry, which means they could be selling their home in a different manner: traditional agent commission split; flat fee brokerage, 100% commission model; a discount broker, like Door; sell the place outright to a cash buyer like OpenDoor or Zillow’s Instant Offer for less than they’d make if they messed with marketing, but get the deal done quickly.

There are many disruptors jolting the real estate marketplace, and we are finally feeling it in Dallas/Fort Worth:

The liquidity or iBuyers/providers: OpenDoor and Zillow’s Instant Offer. benefit to consumer: quick cash.

100% virtual brokerages: eXp Realty, out of Bellingham, Washington. Benefit to consumer: happy, motivated, well compensated agent

100% commission models like JP & Associates, Realty One Group, HomeSmart, etc. Benefit to consumer: happy, super motivated, well compensated agent

Tech brokerages: Compass and Redfin. Benefit to consumer: happy, motivated agent, commission rebate (Redfin) traditional split (Compass)

Flat fee brokerages such as UK’s Purplebricks, Door, OpenListing and ListingSpark. Benefit to consumer: flat fee for selling, savings to consumer

But don’t you “get what you pay for”? As Brad Inman puts it, “For a bigger part of the decade, Keller Williams was beating up on Re/Max, the Realogy brandsBerkshire Hathaway and the big indies. But now all of them are lifting their horns for new fights, with some well-funded challengers proving to be ferocious competitors.” Should we be afraid?

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Alex Doubet of DOOR, a flat-fee brokerage.

We all know Alex Doubet, his flat-fee brokerage Door, which is home-grown, founded and it turns out funded right here in Dallas/Park Cities. We know the story of how he founded the company right out of Harvard, because he thought his mom had paid too much to the agent when she listed and sold her own Park Cities home.

(Real estate brokers get paid thusly: the broker on each side of the deal takes, on average, three percent of the selling price of the home, which is split 50/50 broker/agent. So, if a house sells for $500,000, the seller and buyer’s broker(s) collectively take $30,000 off the table for themselves. But the 3% commission rate is almost always negotiated, especially in higher priced properties, as is the agents’ split. The Door way would be a $10,000 commission on this deal.)

Alex, like many Millennials, likes to think of himself as a disruptor. And he has done a terrific job of promoting himself to date, with billboard ads, even appearing on stage at Inman Real Estate Connect in NYC, which is a pay-to-play gig but hey, you get what you pay for. He listed a challenging neighbor’s home that did not sell, but they were very pleased with the service.

There is nothing new to his flat-fee brokerage model, that has been tried and, in some cases, proven successful at certain price ranges. It may even be successful at “uncertain” price ranges, too, as home prices contract.

But what is watchable about DOOR is that he is getting people to write checks to expand the company.

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I have to say, I think I am going to really like Alex Doubet, chief executive officer of the real estate company Door. First of all, soft spot for Ivy Leaguers, and Doubet went to Harvard. Secondly, he said this to the Dallas Morning News:

“When you see all the nicely printed collateral from the brokers around town, the pictures and the big-hair poses, that’s all nice, but it doesn’t do anything to sell your house,” Doubet says. “It’s somewhat akin to saying, ‘I’m going to sell your house by running an ad during the Super Bowl.’ You want to get in front of people who are actually going to buy your house, not just spray and pray everywhere.”

Spray and pray! Those big-hair ads are branding ads, but I have said for years the best things agents can do is get the HOUSE out in front of buyers, not their big hair and designer clothes. Those glossy ads are expensive — fun, an ego trip, especially when someone does your make-up or you arrive at the photo shoot in a limo with champagne bucket– but what does it really do to sell the home?

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