Vail Daily Ask Realtor: Will the internet replace real estate brokers? |

Vail Daily Ask Realtor: Will the internet replace real estate brokers?

Joan Harned Ask a Realtor

Dear Joan: I have been thinking about a career as a real estate agent​,​ but my fellow millennials have been laughing at me, saying that real estate agents will go the way of the dinosaurs and be extinct in a couple of years. They are saying ​that the growing use of the internet to shop for almost anything​ will eliminate the need for​ the local agent in the very near future. ​

Joan, you​ must receive information about the likelihood of this happening, since you are in the industry now. I remember everyone used to use travel agents to book their flights, and now, hardly anyone does.​

What are you hearing and what do you think about an internet take over of your ​business?

Dear​ Curious​​ Millennial: I understand why ​your friends​ might think this, especially ​since​ they ​most likely ​have never bought a home or investment property​,​​ ​​but ​constantly shop online​ for most items in their daily life​.​ ​I can safely say they ​most likely ​have never bought a property of any size or of great value​,​ ​because if they had, then they would realize the important facts associated with a real estate purchase.

More than 80 percent of buyers work with realtors because:

• They realize that this is one of the most expensive purchases of their whole life​;

• That it involves a lengthy​,​ sequential process that needs careful coordination in order to have it reach a successful closing;

• They know that this is one thing that cannot be sent back if they don’t like it.

Yes, ​they ​might rent a vacation room or home for a week or two ​on the internet, with little or no knowledge of the property. Sometimes that goes well and sometimes it is an unpleasant surprise, but it is a small issue in the grand scheme of things.

However, if you are finding a place to live in every day for the next five to 50 years, then you are going to want to have a knowledgeable professional helping you see​ the best properties​ and make the right choice​s​ — and get the best deal, too.

You might go to the internet to fix a flat tire or make a quiche, but do you know anyone who studies up on the internet and watches YouTube videos until they can go ahead and extract or fill their own tooth? I highly doubt it.

Joan Harned is an owner and broker for Keller Williams Mountain Properties and heads up Team Black Bear, her own real estate team. Harned has been selling real estate in Eagle County for 27 years. Contact Harned with your real estate questions at, 970-337-7777 or

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