Where Real Estate Gets Its Dirt

Industry Relations Episode 31: Conversations Around Disruptors & Data at Inman Connect 2019—with Sam DeBord

At Inman Connect, the top movers and shakers in real estate come together to learn about the latest technology and explore what’s next for the industry. And in 2019, the hot topics include disruptors like Compass and eXp, the impact of data aggregators on the MLS, and the relevance of franchisers in light of tech centric startup brokerages. So, what are the most interesting conversations happening at the conference this year? And what SHOULD we be talking about? 

Today, Rob and Greg are sharing the highlights of Inman & CEO Connect (live from the lobby of the Marriott Marquis), discussing how the conference focuses on the intersection of real estate and technology and what predictions Inman has gotten right over the years. They speak to Brad Inman’s interview with Rob Reffkin, Ben Kinney’s talk knocking brands like Compass and eXp, and the conversation among brokers, franchisers and tech company CEOs regarding the MLS. Rob asks why no one is talking about Redfin, and Greg predicts when the industry will recognize it as a significant force. 

Then Rob and Greg snag Sam DeBord, Managing Broker and VP of Strategic Growth for Coldwell Banker Danforth in Seattle, to get his take on Kinney’s advice to brokers and the research around stock options and franchise loyalty. Listen in to understand why franchises need to make their value offerings more obvious and easy to use—and learn why Greg believes the mortgage space is ripe for disruption.

What’s Discussed: 

The highlights of the Inman Connect conference in NYC 

How technology has (and has not) impacted real estate

Brad Inman’s interview with Rob Reffkin at CEO Connect
-Leak of Pacific Union acquisition
-Concerns re: data aggregators

Ben Kinney’s criticisms of brands like Compass and eXp

When the industry will recognize Redfin as a significant force

The talk among brokers and tech CEOs around the MLS

The tech community’s struggle re: cooperation and compensation

How Inman called the rise of the iBuyer model 

Kinney’s advice to brokers on prepping agents for a market shift

Sam’s insight on the research around stock options and loyalty

Why franchises need to make value offerings easy to use

Why the mortgage space is ripe for disruption

Connect with Sam:

Sam at Seattle Home

Connect with Rob and Greg:

Rob’s Website

Greg’s Website


Inman Connect 2019

The Ben Kinney Team

Redfin Commercial

MIPIM PropTech

Greg’s Post on HouseCanary


When Software Eats the Real (Estate) World

Steve Murray Real Trends Research


  1. Good listen. To clarify, “free” as in beer.

    Let’s assume the MLS sticks around. The common pool is good for everyone, IMO. Well, except those who want to go off and do their own thing irrespective of the rest of the market (shame about the fragmentation).

    What does the industry need? On the tech side, push replication — aka a real estate firehose — and a common schema. This makes the 650+ individual markets look like one market, with local flavor. Much better than a national MLS, which would be challenging for a number of reasons, for one they’d have a hard time getting things done .

    On the business side: streamlined data licensing.

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