Charlottesville Real Estate Company Streamlines

I take no happiness or satisfaction from being right.


Word came to me Friday morning that two branches of Real Estate III will be closing merging with other, existing locations. They are closing their office at Forest Lakes and consolidating into the 29 North branch and moving their corporate staff from Pepsi Place to their Rio Road location.

This isn’t surprising news – they are the 800 pound gorilla in the Charlottesville market and had the greatest expansion. Now as we face inevitable – and desperately needed – cleansing of the real estate hobbyists from the entire industry, they are among the first to recognize and react to current and projected economy.

These aren’t “layoffs” but rather efficiency moves to reduce overhead (there’s too much of it in real estate anyway) and streamline.

And I suspect that this is but the beginning; Real Estate III has so many offices that one or two (or probably even three or four) won’t matter so much in the grand scheme … but for the companies that have only one office …

This is but a sign that a paradigm shift is underway from “big-box” brokerages to smaller, nimble brokerages comprised of fewer and more experienced agents.

Update 28 October 2008:

I meant and mean nothing negative with this post. I see streamlining as positive for companies, individuals and the industry as a whole. Taking the company out of it, our industry is full of inefficiencies, and anything that can be done to remove those, and make our collective profession better is to be lauded.

The Friday timeline was put into the story to demonstrate that I didn’t run with a rumor; I vetted and sourced before I hit publish. Rumors can be damaging; that is why I prefer to trade in facts.

If this had been a prominent company closing shop, I would have waited for it to hit the papers and linked off of that. But it’s not.

As I said in my comment – if there is any part of this post that is inaccurate, needs clarification, necessitates retraction, please let me know. Nobody benefits from inaccuracies.

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  1. Charles McDonald October 27, 2008 at 12:00

    You hit the nail on the head Jim.
    Like with a lot of businesses, the “nimble” companies will be able to “weather” the “storm” better…

  2. Jim Duncan October 27, 2008 at 12:04

    I do wish I had been a fly on the wall this morning when they announced it to the full company … some of the ones I’ve spoken to have been non-plussed to happy about the shift.

  3. Barbara McMurry October 27, 2008 at 16:30

    Hi Jim,
    By big box I’m sure you don’t mean franchises? Surely not-

  4. Jim Duncan October 27, 2008 at 18:54

    Barbara –

    I do think that franchises are going to be diminished by the market shift. I am seeing more and more Realtors nationwide evolve from under the franchise umbrella and go out on their own. In doing so, they minimize (eliminate) the overhead associated with the “big-box” infrastructure and mentality.

    Coincidentally, I received an email from a local Realtor a few weeks ago asking just this question … I’ll answer it in a post early next week.

  5. Pingback: The Hook News Blog » Blog Archive » RE III to close an office

  6. Jim Duncan October 28, 2008 at 13:20

    Thank you for your comment. I’m only interested in reporting news that affects our region. Please correct me if anything I wrote is inaccurate, and I will immediately correct/retract/clarify.

    As I said in my post, I see this only as a sign of the current economic times and that I’m confident that REIII will be just fine.

    *Edit – I removed the previous comment from another commenter at his request. I also removed the name from this comment. I know him and he’s a friend, so I called him immediately and talked to him about the post, comment, etc.

  7. Utah Dave March 19, 2009 at 20:40

    This has been my soap box. Big game is up for anybody right now. The big players are changing.

  8. Pingback: Is This The New Normal in the Charlottesville Real Estate Market? |

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