Jet: The Future Of Real Estate Now!
Jet: The Future Of Real Estate Now!
The New Zealand real estate industry is poised for a dramatic change with today’s launch of Jet - the agent you use when you don’t want to use an agent.
www.jetagent.co.nz is a virtual, yet fully licensed, real estate agent that allows customers to buy and sell property online - a world first that celebrates the Kiwi DIY attitude. Jet gives New Zealanders what they want - an easy, reliable way to take control over the process of buying and selling property and save a lot of money at the same time.
Kiwis have taken to using the Internet for searching for properties in a huge way. A Nielsen NetRatings survey in May of this year found there were almost 1.2 million people checking out New Zealand properties listed online every month. And these aren’t just quick hits either, with people spending on average 161 minutes per week on specialist real estate websites.
These websites have quickly become buyers’ first choice, with 86 percent of those surveyed rating the internet as the best tool for real estate research, far outstripping newspapers or magazines. The survey also revealed 76 percent of sellers do not want to pay real estate commissions, 61 percent do not see the value agents provide and 52 percent say they do not like the pressure from agents.
This is where Jet comes in.
Jet can do everything a “bricks and mortar” estate agent can do - but Jet Agent of course will be much cheaper. Anyone who becomes a member can buy and sell property right there online.
It costs nothing to become a Jet member and nothing to buy property using Jet. To sell your property with an exclusive listing costs only $20 and the success fees is only 0.35 percent - about one third of one percent. Compare that to traditional agents taking up to 4 percent commission!
If sellers want to increase their advertising, they can pay for more features. For example an additional $150 will get their property listed on Trade Me, allrealestate.co.nz and realestate.co.nz, the official website of the real estate industry and New Zealand’s largest real estate website, with over 80 percent of all property listings nationwide and 95 percent of all licensed listings.
This is real value for money, given it costs $149 to list a house for sale on TradeMe alone, and only licensed real estate agents can list on the other websites.
Jet Agent Principal John Bradley sees Jet as a “natural evolution for the real estate industry”, given the widespread use of the Internet and how savvy New Zealand property investors have become.
“This is a New Zealand first and as far as we can tell this is done nowhere else in the world.”
jetagent.co.nz is a website backed up by a call centre so the buyer or seller is not totally on their own through what can be a stressful process for many.
Other features include a getting the lawyers involved early by having them verify members. “We don’t want bored 13-year-olds selling the family bach, so we had to develop a system to ensure members really are who they say they are,” Mr Bradley says.
“Lawyers are the obvious group to make up for the loss of a face to face agent” There will be a database of lawyers on the site so consumers can find their own lawyer and if they want they can keep them involved all the way through to the final sale or purchase.
Mr Bradley says real estate agents cost too much and are often an unnecessary mediator in the process of buying and selling property.
“Many agents are good but some of them are just a barrier to good communication. It will be refreshing for people to be able to deal with each other without an agent getting in the way,” Mr Bradley says.
This sounds strange coming from a man who has worked in the real estate industry for the past eight years, being the creator and former principal of Kapiti Coast-based Totally Kiwi Real Estate.
But Mr Bradley’s business experience as the former CEO of several companies has created a mindset of finding better ways of doing things.
“The current standard real estate business model is too costly. Using commission agents is an expensive and inefficient way to sell a house. We have been working on ways to reduce costs for years now and this virtual agent has come to us as the next natural evolution. I just can’t understand why it hasn’t been done before”
While the development of Jet Agent has been in planning for some time the launch was not programmed for mid 2008. Then Building and Construction Minister Hon Clayton Cosgrove’s review of the Real Estate Industry changed everything and inspired Mr Bradley to bring the development and launch date forward.
“There are no limitations in the old legislation to prevent our web based agent from trading, but we did sense that the industry leaders might have made it very difficult,” says Mr Bradley.
“The Minister demanding change gave us great encouragement to work harder and get the website up and running earlier.”
He says there is a strong trend towards not using agents and it was just a matter of finding the right business model. The last Nielsen NetRatings property survey revealed that 50 percent of the market would either sell privately or consider selling privately. The main driver for this attitude shift is the cost of using a real estate agent and a prevailing attitude that real estate agents don’t do enough for what they are paid.
“Our customers will save a significant amount of money while they maintain complete control of the process. Jet Agent will cut out the middleman and bypass the information filter.
“We will have several advantages over our competitors, but our two primary benefits will be a low cost of selling and the provision of a shorter line of communication between buyers and sellers.”
Jet will compete with private selling specialists such as Homesell and Trade Me, but offers more than these unlicensed operators as Jet Agent is a Licensed Real Estate Agent that can offer all the necessary support.
Mr Bradley says the numerous property sites online today are merely electronic versions of printed advertising. He says jetagent.co.nz stands alone as a unique property trading site that allows each property seller to list their own property for sale and deal directly with the buyer and vice versa until a sale and purchase is concluded.
The real estate industry is under review and new legislation will change the rules in 2008. Mr Bradley says while the changes will allow web based trading easier to implement, he expects that it will still only be Licensed Real Estate Agents who will be able to act in the sale of property by any means.
Mr Bradley says he expects that web based trading will become acceptable, and even the norm in the years to come. He says there will be many new websites offering similar services in the future, but Jet will always be the pioneer that made real estate 2.0 a reality.
Register your interest at www.jetagent.co.nz and join the real estate revolution!