If the past two years have taught us anything it’s that real estate is not only extremely resilient but also extremely dynamic. Given this, planning for an uncertain future will never be black and white. However, developing the right mindset to meet whatever challenges lie ahead will position your brokerage to remain powerful and sustainable.
This is a theme RISMedia’s CEO & Leadership Exchange will tackle during the two-and-a-half-day event on September 6-8, 2022, in Washington, D.C. at the Mayflower Hotel. In fact, the program will address this theme on day one.
“In it for the Long Haul? Evaluating the Staying Power of Your Business Model” will unpack how brokerage leaders are adapting their current business models to meet the demands of tomorrow. Among the panel of industry leaders is Rick Haase, president of United Real Estate, who has plenty to say on the current state of the industry and what should be on the minds of industry leaders as they forge ahead into uncharted territory.
We were able to speak to Haase ahead of this can’t-miss event to get his take on some of the topics that may be covered during this panel discussion in September.
Caysey Welton: What’s your best advice to brokers to future-proof their businesses?
Rick Haase: I think the notion of future-proofing your business requires the right mindset. During the course of owning and operating a business, there are an infinite number of variables, new programs, services, business models, financial techniques etc., if applied, can improve performance of the existing business. The key to future-proofing is always being willing to watch the horizon and select which tactical and strategic advances will help your business stay at the forefront of the industry. Business owners must never become enamored with their success in the past to the point where they forget about evolving (and sometimes evolving quickly) into what will bring them success in the ever-changing landscape of the brokerage business.
CW: Do brokers who want to grow their businesses need to be acquisitive?
RH: Yes. One hundred % in tasks associated with organic one-off Agent acquisition and 100% in opportunities to become another Broker’s succession solution. The opportunities with the latter type of acquisition are tremendous once you understand the proper valuation and transaction structure that allow both the acquirer and the acquired to achieve what they want and need.
CW: In terms of attracting and keeping top talent, how important is technology?
RH: Technology is such an all-encompassing term. To be specific, I believe web-based assets that enable agents to communicate, market themselves and their listings and connect immediately with past, present and future (new business opportunities) are important. To transact business and stay in touch after the transaction are critical components, and it is extremely important for the growing majority of agents. I also believe that core people, negotiation, business planning, discipline skills and knowledge are too often overlooked as brokerage services that should be offered to agents… It’s not an either/or.
CW: What do you see as the biggest opportunity for residential real estate over the next year?
RH: For brokerages, I think that as we head into an ever-tightening market, the opportunities are plentiful for more opportunities for mergers and acquisitions, especially. Also, when Brokerages can offer agents a solid set of business development tools that help win business, they are extremely well positioned to grow in Agent count too.
CW: There are certainly several headwinds, despite the current hot market, what do you see as real estate’s biggest challenge?
RH: Externally the challenges will continue to come from businesses that challenge the status quo of organized real estate. iBuyers and lead aggregators, as examples, are doing their level best to redirect the commission revenue from current real estate practitioners. Their tech-enabled models are slowly gaining ground and becoming part of the new landscape. Governmental intervention and over regulation look to once again be impactful. Of course, overall affordability is a huge issue now and in the future. Millions of American homeowners now have interest rates sub 3% and have bought homes they could only afford to buy at those atypically low rates. As rates return to a more normalized number, these homeowners are now locked into their current home and will stay put, further depriving the market of the housing turnover rate it needs to quell the price surge that continues to run white hot.
CW: What excites you about the rest of 2022 and looking ahead into 2023?
RH: For real estate brokerages who are operating the right model, one that directs most of the commission earnings into the hands of their agents, the opportunities have never been better. The industry will undergo a totally normal pruning of those business models that are old and struggling. More opportunities will therefore exist for the survivors.
To learn more about RISMedia’s CEO & Leadership Exchange 2022 and register, visit: https://www.rismedia.com/ceo-exchange/