Friday Flash: Dodging Orlando

RESO invited Realty Alliance CEO Craig Cheatham to sit on its board.

Inman surmised that this could thaw the icy relationship between big brokers and MLSs.

I’m just hoping Craig reports back and tells us what RESO is and does.

Yesterday, Zillow hosted a housing forum in Washington, D.C.

Legislators were there. CFPB officials were there. Richard Smith, Realogy’s CEO was there. Big lenders were there. CNBC and The Wall Street Journal were there.

The National Association of REALTORS was not there.

This is becoming a pattern – the “Voice for Real Estate” standing mute on the sidelines of a high-profile housing discussion. One could criticize NAR for this, but I think it’s more interesting to consider Zillow’s growth in this role.

Will the company begin to advocate on behalf of homeowners rather than just congregate policy makers? Will it use its newfound influence to weigh in on issues that impact the real estate industry? If so, will it support their customers (the industry) or their end users (consumers)?

Who knows. But it’s really something to watch.

Move [see disclosure below] has made a couple nice plays in the past month.

First, they released AgentMatch, a service that crunches a ton of data to help sellers pick a Realtor. This is important. Because while people can now use hundreds of whiz-bang apps and sites to find a home, they’re pretty much SOL when it comes time to find an agent.

Agent reviews are OK, but they seem to regress toward a comfortable and useless mean. If we all know there are at least half a million Realtors who are certified knuckleheads, why does everyone get 4 stars online?

Some of the newer data-driven sites (HomeLight, most notably) are good, but Move has more and better data.

Second, they acquired FiveStreet, a nimble little application that enables agents to consolidate leads from multiple sources, respond to them instantly, and route them as needed.

FiveStreet is one of a new breed of light, usable, mobile-friendly apps slowly dissolving the legacy real estate software business. Smart of Move to gobble them up.

As my calendar fills for the NAR Expo in San Francisco next month, I am filled with gratitude.

I don’t have to go to Orlando.

Enjoy the weekend.

[Disclosure: Move is a 1000WATT client.]