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Here’s how home buying and selling has been made fully transparent

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The South African real estate landscape has fundamentally changed in just a few short years: fixed-fee and low-commission estate agencies have received the lion’s share of the limelight, causing sellers to question long-held fee structures based on the selling price of their homes.

This is in no way unique to South Africa; on the contrary, the US, UK and Australia have led the charge, all incorporating smart technology to make the buying and selling transaction more affordable and efficient. Still, a missing element among all the technology is a vital requirement: transparency.

That is until now…home page

Eazi.com is South Africa’s first true transactional platform which allows full transparency and operates as a property buying and selling marketplace. The founders have a great track record having between them launched several well-known property media and technology brands, including IOLProperty.co.za.

“From the outside it might look like an online or fixed-fee estate agency,” says co-founder and CEO, Shaun Minnie. “It’s actually much more: We do absolutely everything a traditional estate agent does (providing a comparative market assessment (CMA), hosting viewings and handling negotiations), but our customers can also transact fully online and interact with us and each other through our eazi.com marketplace.

“When we set out to ‘redesign the system’ we broke up the process of buying and selling a home into the various elements that make up the transaction, including the role of the estate agent. We designed process and technology solutions for each element. The optimal solution came out as a platform with as much human support as a customer needs, where every property is assigned a team that manages the entire process from listing to transfer. But, since all data and activity go through the marketplace, it allows the transacting parties to be involved as little or as much as they want.

“Buyers and sellers can make and receive offers online; all offers made appear alongside the property on the site and any buyer that has shown interest in the property is automatically notified so they can submit a better offer if they wish. They can also access rich data on eazi.com, providing deeds office information on what a property and its neighbouring homes previously sold for. And, the platform provides Google Street View capabilities so buyers and sellers can gauge some external features of the recently sold homes. The entire process has been made totally transparent.”

Is your price a fair one?sold recnt

“This allows buyers to make an informed decision when putting in an offer on a home for sale,” says Minnie, noting that this feature also benefits sellers. “Before listing your home for sale, you can research your own suburb to ensure we price your property in line with the market in which it is located.

“Information that used to be available only to estate agents is now available to buyers and sellers. In addition, technology is making the process much more efficient. We believe this must translate into tangible benefits for the transacting parties so our once-off transaction fee remains only R29,500, whatever the value of the home, and is only payable on successful sale.”

Despite only launching on 1 September, the site already has about 100 listings and has had about 75 offers through the platform thus far.

Eazi.com properties are marketed on portals such as Property24 and Private Property, Google, in social media and even in print.


Visit eazi.com to browse properties for sale (currently only for Cape Town) or to list your own property for sale

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david.steynberg@gmail.com

David A Steynberg, managing editor and director of HomeTimes, has more than 10 years of experience as both a journalist and editor, having headed up Business Day’s HomeFront supplement, SAPOA’s range of four printed titles, digimags Asset in Africa and the South African Planning Institute’s official title, Planning Africa, as well as B2B titles, Building Africa and Water, Sewage & Effluent magazines. He began his career at Farmer’s Weekly magazine before moving on to People Magazine where he was awarded two Excellence Awards for Best Real Life feature as well as Writer of the Year runner-up. He is also a past fellow of the International Women’s Media Foundation.

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