By Jessie Trapp, Marketing Coordinator & Tiana Baur, Marketing Manager
Pumpkin-spiced lattes, pumpkin pie, pumpkin patches, really all things orange colored and pumpkin flavored are right around the corner. That’s right, summer is coming to an end! I know we sound excited and that might sound weird to some people, but we live in Seattle and were literally born in the rain so give us a break.
So, August was scorching hot when it came to random, weird news stories and, as always, we’re here to tell you about it! In case you missed it, here are the top five August 2019 real estate news stories to know:
1. iOi Summit in our hometown
The NAR iOi Summit happened last week in our very own backyard (well, downtown Seattle), and we had SUCH a great time! Curbio won the iOi Summit Pitch Battle, the food was unusually amazing for a conference, and our fearless leader and CEO, York Baur spoke on an interesting new topic: how agents and brokerages can drive more transactions, grow their business, and ultimately, grow the entire economy! Checkout a little snippet here.
2. Kanye West’s Affordable Housing Under Scrutiny
So, yeah… this is a very real headline, we promise we didn’t fabricate it. Here’s the lowdown via NAR: “West broke ground last month for an affordable housing community in Calabasas, Calif. But state authorities are reportedly threatening to demolish the village if West doesn’t bring it into compliance with construction permits by Sept. 13.” Honestly, it’s really incredible seeing someone as high profile as Kanye West use his fame for good. The need for affordable housing has skyrocketed and if he wants to get involved, we are here for it.
However, the jury is still out on his architecture design skills. Apparently, these homes are described as “igloos,” “beehives,” and Star Wars dome-like structures. West has about 30 days left to make the homes compliant with city requirements. Fingers crossed they can sort it out in time.
3. AgentNEO Rolls Out Alexa Skills for Brokerages
Déjà vu? Earlier this summer we noted the announcement of Realogy’s Agent X, an Amazon Alexa voice assistant for real estate agents. Now, we’re recognizing the fact that Amazon is
literally taking over the world growing deeper into the real estate space, with the first large brokerage deploying a voice skill on Amazon’s echo. According to Inman, AgentNEO is “a voice-activated internet (VAI) software company for real estate agents. It helps them create branded apps so customers can ask Alexa about home valuations, finding listings and booking showings. The agent is permanently linked to the user’s device.”
And now they’ve announced a brokerage option as well, which means any franchise or independent brokerage with more than 20 agents can play the game. May the odds be ever in your favor.
4. In Race for Tech Talent, Compass Swoops in After Uber Lays off 400
Okay first of all, Uber… ouch. Second of all… very misleading headline. Hard to know if Compass actually hired anyone from Uber (or if anyone from Uber took them up on it), but regardless, this all boils down to a Tweet. There, you’re welcome. #SlowNewsWeek
5. The U.S. Is Going Green: The Top 10 States With LEED-Certified Residential Homes
Saved the best for last! Can we get a “whoop, whoop!” for eco-friendly living? According to RISMedia, green homes (aka LEED-certified homes or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certified homes) have “increased by 19 percent since 2017, currently at a historic high. Over 400,000 units in the U.S. and almost 500,000 single-family, multifamily and affordable housing properties are certified.”
The top 10 states with these homes are California, Texas, New York, Washington, Colorado, New Jersey, Ohio, Oregon, Maryland and Georgia. Read more about this topic here.
Thank you for reading our snapshot of August 2019 real estate news and stay tuned for another #ICYMI in September! In the meantime, catch up on the latest industry trends and talk via our AMAZING podcast, REAL with MoxiWorks! If you haven’t started tuning into that, you’re definitely missing out.