There is a lot of talk to sort through when it comes to “disruptors” in the real estate industry, including the focus on technology and alternative listing models, such as flat-fee listings and or iBuyer sales.

But that’s not where the real disruption is happening — those are just strategies, says Andy Bearden, founder of the Insight Realty Network. The real disruption the industry faces is the seismic shift in the relationship between brokers and producers.

Andy Bearden

Experienced agents are becoming more demanding of value and will not tolerate a broker that cannot deliver simple things like a returned phone call or timely payments. They want brokers who are business partners and are committed to helping them build a solid business. A broker that will help them build wealth so their family can thrive and they can give back to their community.

“I find it funny that some brokerages teach that the key to wealth building for agents is to help the brokerage to recruit,” Bearden said. “The key to wealth building is to get your personal finances in order, run your business like a business, and invest in real estate.”   

Insight helps on all three fronts with the tools, education, and encouragement people need to finally earn what they are worth.  “And we return every call by the end of the day,” said Bearden.

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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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