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Robot Realtors? Startups Find Ways To Move Real Estate

by Eric Rothman
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Transcription:

Female Reporter:
Could the future of real estate be in the hands of machines? A crop of new startups is finding innovative ways to move homes and apartments quickly.

Male Reporter:
Danielle Nottingham introduces us to the technology that is changing how homeowners rent and sell properties.

Laura:
Hi.

Remote Real Estate Agent:
Hi.

Danielle Nottingham:
Laura Franco is trying something new in her hunt for a rental.

Remote Real Estate Agent:
I’m a licensed real estate agent with Zen Place.

Laura:
It is different, so I mean just the whole robot thing.

Danielle Nottingham:
This roving tablet is her tour guide.

Danielle Nottingham:
This is where all appointments are happening right now?

Danielle Nottingham:
Silicon Valley startup, Zen Place, is using it to rent hundreds of properties around Northern California.

Rahul M.:
What we’ve literally done is taken the entire leasing process from what traditionally used to be days or weeks and cut it down to 15 or 20 minutes.

Danielle Nottingham:
Here’s how it works. You see a property you like, send Zen Place a text, and then you receive a code to access the home. A live licensed real estate agent controls the robot remotely.

Rahul M.:
The traditional agent can do anywhere between three and four showings a day when you factor in traffic and parking and people running late. With the way we do property management and leasing, an average agent can do anywhere between 15 and 20 showings a day.

Eric Rothman:
It’s a full touch screen.

Danielle Nottingham:
Other startups like Rex Real Estate Exchange in Southern California are popping up to compete.

Eric Rothman:
Tell me about the schools.

Danielle Nottingham:
The online marketplace uses what it calls showbots.

Customer:
Rating of seven out of 10.

Danielle Nottingham:
That can answer 75 questions.

Eric Rothman:
Yeah. I think that AI, big data, machine learning is the wave of the future for real estate. It’s going to lower costs. It’s going to make things quicker.

Laura:
Perfect.

Danielle Nottingham:
Laura says Zen place was easy.

Laura:
It works for me.

Danielle Nottingham:
and she didn’t miss having a human by her side. Danielle Nottingham at CBS news, Santa Clara, California.

Male Reporter:
Interesting, huh?

Female Reporter:
Yeah, it is.

Male Reporter:
Zen Place is available in Northern California and Los Angeles. It plans to be in Florida and New York later on this year.

Female Reporter:
And Rex is available in California, New York City, and will start in Denver and Austin later this year with plans to be nationwide by the end of 2018.

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