Inman Connect San Francisco 2016
August 5, 2016, Emeryville, USA
Inman Connect San Francisco 2016
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Revolutionizing the Transaction and the Role of Technology
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  • Description
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About speakers

Austin Allison
CEO at dotloop
Angela Raab
Director of Training and Technology Advancement at F.C. Tucker
Patrick Stone
President and CEO at Williston Financial Group

After studying Real Estate Development at the University of Cincinnati and Corporate Law at The University of Cincinnati College of Law, Austin co-founded dotloop in 2009. He describes what he does as “surrounding the company with great people and keeping us aligned around our vision and goals.” What little free time Austin has is spent with his wife Angela and their Yorkshire terrier Paris. He is an avid endurance sport fanatic, which includes: marathons, triathlons, and wakeboarding. Austin was named to the 2012 Forbes 30 Under 30 class, Inman News Top 100 Most Influential Real Estate Leaders, and was 1 of 10 CEOs featured as “Ohio’s Most Talented Entrepreneurs” by CEO Magazine. Most recently, Austin made the cover of Entrepreneur Magazine and was named Inman News’ 2012 Innovator of the Year.

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An industry veteran since 2008, Angela Raab maintained a successful real estate career and is currently the Director of Agent Development and Technology Advancement for the F.C. Tucker Company. Angela believes passionately in the power of agent development through her mission of creating an environment in which agents can’t imagine a not succeeding. Her development philosophy centers around finding each agent’s start button, helping them find their why, and creating fun, engaging learning experiences rooted in enthusiasm and the fundamental sales competencies.

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Pat has enjoyed a lengthy career in real estate and real estate related services, including “C” officer positions with three public companies and as a director on two Fortune 500 Boards. The senior executive management positions included nine years as President and COO of the nation’s largest title insurance company, Chairman and Co-CEO of a software company and CEO of a real estate data and information company.Pat also served as Vice-Chairman of Metrocities Mortgage, a 2005 top twenty mortgage lender, and as Chairman of The Stone Group, an Austin, Texas based tenant-rep brokerage company. Additionally, Pat served on the Boards of World Minerals, DigitalMap, Homegain, RedVision, Wystein Capital, and Inman News, who named him one of 2013’s “100 Most Influential People in Real Estate.”

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About the talk

Topic: Business


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The part of the genesis of this panel was to get the update from the guys that are building the backend stuff that I've been talkin about endlessly forever the Lotte vision and all of that but then I thought you know, we're really trying more and more and more instead of having a technologist talk about their great product to have brokers talk about it because when they tend to know more about real estate than the tech people and so we found out on Facebook and ask for recommendations, and we're really lucky to find Angela and I would say to all of you that you know, I listened to yesterday

to do some of the breakouts and some of the articulate smart capable people would ask questions. I try to go up to him and say, who are you you really send a great you'd be good on stage if you're willing to do that and we are always looking for new blood, you know, there's going to be some people in history don't have to keep rehashing the same old people every time and we like new voices new people. So in New York in luxury, Inman Connect on the road, if you're doing something special you're willing to get on the stage, you're smart. You're intelligent, you you're not a BSer or you've not done one

deal year and you're really selling real estate. You're really good at what you do or you're using technology really clever way. I want to talk to you even if they email me the old-fashioned way to email Brett at Inman.combut we have a whole gaggle of people Kristi and Drew. We're out looking constantly for really smart capable people and the whole idea is we learn from each other. That's where Angela came from, I went on to Facebook and she's from Indianapolis so I can instantly like her the sweet Midwest and she just seems solid not some bullshiter. She was like, wow, she really was just it was

like I was talking to my people back in the Midwest and we want to start with you and tell us all the stuff and I was really impressed that you're doing on the back in at the fancy marketing stuff, but the back end to make it easier for your agents for your clients and that we'd like to do is now you got that what do you need next to make it even easier and these two really smart guys are like super smart are going to tell us what's being built now. Do the Last Mile and what's in our way? Does that logic work for everybody. It's all yours Angela

So we started looking at this issue about 18 months ago maybe even 2 years ago where we realized three things. The first thing we realized is that consumers have this portal weariness and it's growing so my husband just took a new job and we had to sign up for 12 different portals 3 of which were medical dental and vision, even though they were all owned by the same company. So sick of everybody asking them to sign up for the portal, right. The second thing we realize was that we were making technology decisions in a silo and what I mean by that is really for the modern

brokerage every single department is making technology decisions and when they make them in silos, they're off and picking the best thing for them for that department, but they're not picking what's fit. In the overall strategic Vision, so we kind of stopped all of that. And we said anytime we make any technology decision. We've got to get all the stakeholders in a room and we have to realize that maybe the product that feels like a Porsche isn't right. We got to go with the Toyota because that's the one that fix our fits our strategic vision and then when we took all of that we

started looking for something that we could offer to our agents and our clients that would be that one place, but it's not out there yet. We said this all week is not out there yet. So we said what's the closest thing to it for us? It was a transaction management system because our clients already have to login and it F.C. Tucker. We have Affiliated businesses. We have title mortgage insurance and we have our own internal Angie's List. Do you kind of like we heard from open-door they own the transaction by owning the property you own a big piece of it by owning all these Subs Rivers going out

from him. And so when we look at our internal Angie's List, which we call Home Services we said, okay, we want to get all of you guys connected somehow into our transactions and it's all these vendors are home services has roofers than movers and plumbers and you know security people all that type of stuff. And so when we decided to really double down on the transaction management portion of it, we really went to all of these ancillary services and we said look this is what we're going to use you're going to have to use it to you said

Plug-In or don't play absolutely you have so much power to do that with your vendors are not going to get the business. I never understood why more people didn't do that. Like if you want to play with us, you got to plug into our system. At the end of the day because we don't have this one login that works for all of our systems. We had to really start to rely on apis. So an API is an application programming interface and make it short and sweet. That's how different

applications talk to each other. It's how transaction management company transaction management software can talk to your accounting software for you. So it's a combination. So, you know, we look at what our vendors have already built for apis and then the information from their apis comes into our databases and we found more we have to build our own apis to get them out to people who really don't really kind of know what they're doing all this stuff a lot of pain. Requirements Clarity specifications apis Porsche vendors to

behave and now what happens in there for the agent quickly and what happens in there for the customer quickly that makes your life their life everybody's life and I like the party last night. Wonderful when we had everybody in the same system are agents are able to connect clients with vendors like a title with one click of a button they can connect their client with who they want to do business with now if it's in our Network are mortgage R title, those people are already in the system. So the agent really has to

click a button if the agent wants to use somebody outside of our service. They certainly can have them document sharing communication. What are it sounds like with my speech a year ago. You know, so our mortgage people are putting the mortgage docs inside of our system and its bring brought over from their system. How do you close in that environment? Right, you still that you're using using DocuSign or something like that? Right? So all you're doing all that paper is gone, but now we're getting to let's sign on the dotted line. I second wire a billion dollars to

Switzerland if I had it tomorrow morning with Merrill Lynch, but I can't buy $100,000 condo in Vegas without going through a million zillion crazy nut case people trying to figure out paper shuffling. How does it where do we need to get to get the closing and how close are we and what do these guys need to do to make that happen in our state? This log literally just passed the title company has to give the tax disclosures on Goldenrod paper of a specific weight

loss and we've had closings delayed because title companies run out of the specific paper, right? Let's write an article about Goldenrod paper in Indiana and how screwed up the regular so that's really the first thing right? Like we've got to figure out how we is an industry can really look at those issues and say are you kidding me? You know, we we just had to leave Goldenrod Goldenrod paper. Yeah, you know and so that keeps us in a paper paper environment. Do you know because of these?

Yeah, but then, you know once we get kind of past that we really are looking to the vendors, you know to help us come up with that one system that can service every time to solve the problem. Okay, let's do these guys. Let's start with you Pat. So I think we now see the problem. What what's in a way and what's being built to take care of this so than a year from now. We'll say that Sable stop a different problem. What is the biggest issue that we face? It? It's really the non-public private information and compliance

and that view from the lenders seat on the lenders are highly regulated and I'll give you just an example of how that is manifested itself in the last 7 years. The cost of originating a mortgage is gone from an average of $3,900 to about $7,500 a mortgage that is a fairly significant increase in cost and that's all been because of the need to be compliant with cfpb regulations lenders right now are deathly afraid of sharing any information outside perfectly secure environment. Is that because the regulatory oversight as good as cyber crime, is that although

7 intensive audits on your technology and your exchange of data there doesn't seem to be a lot of security. There is a peculiar to mortgage and real-estate aftermath of of the subprime collapse, you know, maybe a little bit of that but also I will tell your audience that the amount of cybercrime going on right now is a hundred times what you think it is. Yeah, we get hacked. We have a system that shows are you know our system and we're than that were being hacked wear hats 24/7 24/7 we can see where they're coming from their coming from

St. Petersburg Russia coming from the Czech Republic and where they've really gotten traction is hacking Realty Realtors iPhones, and then they get all the information around an escrow and then they pretend like they're participant in escrow. They send us an email to they call us and say hey, this is Joe Blow and I'm closing on Friday. I can't come in and pick up my check. Will you send it to this Bank instead? weather you think that the government's going to protect us seems really stupid. They're not but I think it's hackers. Right? I mean all I bet 90% of those

rules to protect us aren't even working. Let's let's now say you get the verification authentication the approval to share the data you guys are just plodding through that mess to do that. Correct, but we can't share any non-public private information. You can't plug into Tucker's system with any of my records so that I can have an easy great exhibition information. We cannot share it and now but I will tell you until we have made it better data security. It is a huge issue. O

exchange between settlement Lenders that I've seen in 45 years and I ate all just not to bore the audience but you some of you may remember mismo mismo was this gigantic effort by the mortgage industry the standard standardized data and the idea of being once a day to a standard we would facilitate exchange of data this occurred in 1999, and we standardized all the data input in the mortgage industry and nothing happened now all of a sudden because the economics I'm talking

so what has happened Brad is that really had a nominal effect on anybody carrying. I mean really nobody cares nobody used it. But because of the economics being caused by compliance lenders are engaging with us. We're doing more data exchange with lenders now than I've ever seen in the last year-and-a-half two years. So I guess the question is is is Angela part of that discussion meaning and they are Brokers. I know there's something else when I'm up streaming and brother bar. I think they should I'll be focused on

this and be at the table and make absolutely sure that Angeles part of the solution. So it's not over here with lenders in title companies in a black box and its mystery and she said they're trying to run a real estate guy machine should be the one that's plugged into it. Okay, let me she's actually my Frontline protecting me against my lender and it gets all these people. That's how I feel about it. And I just always since the Realtors are either not there's not that smart so they can't handle all this, and then you guys over here and it's like I don't know why they so that is not

even a subject. Although let me take a department. I just said something incorrect cfpb just came out with an announcement that they're looking at modifying tread so you can have more data exchange with the consumer has been so we will be at Riverbend, 47 having twins. So I got that hump God. I hate that all that government stuff. Let's talk about technology. So we can't solve. And mid and win but we can develop product that gets us there talk to us about the general product development is going on Austin. They will help Angela do the last mile sure.

It is happening it that solves a lot of these problems while I as much as anybody else in this room would love to be able to click and buy a house and and minutes and not deal with the financing hurdles and bureaucracy that we just discussed but I'm a big believer in focusing on the things in which we have the most control and I think and we do have a lot of control over everything that happens before the transaction what in a perfect world there would be one software that does everything from search all the way through to the closing but I don't

think we'll ever get there and I think that's okay and I think it's okay because great company. Tend to focus on their strengths and their core competencies. So for example technology solution, like. Loop will probably never build an accounting software just because that's not our strength. So I think that there will continue to be a need for integration between tools but what I would encourage Brokers and agents to do is look for solutions that are into end to the extent that they can be to eliminate some of these integration point. So when is that like Angeles building? It sounds like

it I mean, but there's there's a lot of I'll tell you some of the stories that I know so I met a guy last week named Melvin Yates who was an Exit Realty broker about 10 months ago. Melvin was using multiple tools to conduct transactions. He had a software for his real estate form creation. He had a software that he was using for e-signatures get a software that he was using for transaction Management on the back end. He implemented. Loop in a 9 months. He went from one agent 250 agents. And the reason why is he got rid of all Frozen did one system exactly every time you eliminate an

integration point you are eliminating risk and you're eliminating inefficiency. So he can focus on the things that move the needle another customer that I ran into Yesterday Metro Brokers. They're doing a lot of the things that that Angela just mentioned they from the moment that they on board an agent there doing it in one system. Loop from the moment that the agent needs a prospective client for a listing that listing presentation is happening in one system to the document creation to the e-signature all the way through to the back office all the way through to the services from

mortgage title insurance and Home Warranty got a lot of these tools are out there and we as an industry just need to adopt them. That's really still key. So I got to turn you up paddle your building at West. What are the technology features your building before we get to that? What are you working on right now the next layer of love. What's your product set in the beginning was the signatures those kind of things? What are what are features your building? We're hearing DocuSign, which is I guess in competitive doing this from lead to close. Is that symbol your product roadmap?

What can the people here that your customers expect you to do? So there's a few things that were working on. So on the lead the clothes Point. Absolutely. I mean, that's something that we've been working on with our customers for 6 years and many of our customers are already doing it. We we have a lot of Integrations with third parties like inside real estate's a recent one the integrated with us that enables that lead to close functionality so that will continue to be a theme but more broadly I would say that we're focused on creating a standard in the industry. So will I

would pass book about the is this data standard or a different standard helping the industry to adopt a common tool as if you look in the Marketplace Marketplace is our most efficient when people are on a common currency or enter interacting on a common standard and we're at a point in time now. Where they're like, I know. Lutz numbers. I don't I don't track the others but we have over a million monthly active users over 300,000 of which are real estate agents using dotloop to create transactions or focused on helping those real estate agents interact with other agents to create

a common standard to other things that were focused on would be mobile and teems if we're seeing teams has a huge huge movement is a particular software for them. Great exactly. Do you stop a little bit different from our contract with both systems. So you playing those what are you building up? Cuz I know you're excited right now is our consumer dashboard and and this this should resonate with all everyone in the audience because When a transaction is

signed to sign into goes into a black hole for about 45 days in the consumer Frets wonders what's going on anxiety level goes up. So we've developed the dashboard online dashboard that automatically updates out of our escrow system and provides a consumer. Both buyer and seller was seven points along the way what's going on how close the transaction is coming to a closing keep them informed keep them in the loop. Now. I'm going to be straight up with you. I got excited about this because this eliminated 21 emails or phone calls. So I'm canceling out the dollars I'm saving time is right. I

was really excited. But what I didn't understand what really floored me was it consumer comes to the closing in a relaxed Happy State of Mind the closing takes half as long last questions and it reflects positively on our client. It makes the realtor look good cuz of consumer has a positive experience. They're informed the whole way. So it saves me money, but it makes for a better track. And I applaud what these two are doing because the more information the consumer has the more involved. They are the happier. Everybody is keep up the good work and you're making progress. I know it's

tough and I we applaud you for that.

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