Published April 21, 1997
Volume 5, Number 4
Reinventing Residential Real Estate
Real Estate SuperStore Streamlines, Simplifies Home Buying Process
By Jay Hipps
The process of buying a house has changed very little over of the past 30 years. Aside from the introduction of computer databases which are now used to generate each area's Mulitple Listing Service (MLS), there has been little innovation in the business.
Founder Larry Osborne, right, and Sr. VP Mark Moyers at Pleasanton's Real Estate SuperStore, the first of
10 planned locations.
That's a situation that Larry Osborne, president of the Real Estate SuperStore, sees as an opportunity. "Our goal is to serve as an all-inclusive real estate and community information center, integrating information, people and technology in a friendly environment," he says.
Although they emphasize service, the Real Estate SuperStore is a bargain, too, with commissions reduced to as low as 3.5 percent.
The Saturn of Real Estate
"It's a bit like the Saturn car dealerships," says Osborne, who has over 30 years' knowledge of the Tri-Valley market. "We're created a store where people can shop for a home, where they can get information and they're free to come and go. They can ask questions and not feel like somebody is going to grab them.
"We're changing the image of how real estate is transacted and we're hoping to make it a pleasurable experience."
Osborne notes that some people have come in just to view the exhaustive demographic information that the store maintains, including details on recent sales and listings as well as labor market data, city planning and zoning information, school test scores, census studies, and surveys of local healthcare, transit, recreation, entertainment, and more.
"We want to give people more information than they thought they wanted to know," he explains.
Integrating New Technology
Real Estate SuperStore makes all this information accessible on a computer kiosk that is the centerpiece of their store. Along with color photographs of each home available through the MLS, they display aerial photographs of the area with subdivision boundaries outlined. Color photos of scenes from around each neighborhood complete the picture.
"We've computerized the floor plans of all of Pleasanton's subdivisions, so prospective buyers can familiarize themselves with an area very quickly, instead of spending a lot of time driving around," he adds.
For more information, call the Real Estate SuperStore at (510) 734-8888 or stop by 4811 Hopyard Road in the Gateway Square center.
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