San Francisco, CA, July 29, 2011 –(PR.com)– Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, the Bay Area’s leading real estate services company, announced today that it has launched the industry’s most far-reaching cloud technology initiative – a groundbreaking new program designed to ultimately make the traditional home sale a paperless transaction.
The company wide initiative, which combines innovative technology from its parent company as well as a significant local effort to going paperless, is being launched to sharply reduce the reams of paperwork that accompany every transaction, save company expenses and create operational efficiencies across the entire organization. Equally important, Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage hopes the program will make it much easier for homebuyers and sellers to conduct business in a virtual environment, via cloud computing.
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage’s cloud solution, called HomeBase?, will enable consumers using any mobile device to have a virtual hub at their fingertips where they can access their secure documents, communicate with their agent, be notified of key developments in their transaction, view a presentation about the mortgage application process and customize a calendar of to-do items related to their transaction. In some cases, other important parties such as the mortgage company, title agency and home appraiser can be linked in as well.
The HomeBase transaction management cloud is a proprietary tool developed in-house by Realogy Corporation, a global provider of real estate and relocation services. Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage is owned and operated by NRT LLC, which is a subsidiary of Realogy. NRT-owned companies operating in markets across the country are currently utilizing the HomeBase cloud solution. In the first half of 2011 alone, more than 1.6 million documents were uploaded and approximately 18,000 clients logged in to use the system across the NRT family of companies.
“The real estate industry is arguably the biggest user of paper in corporate America, but also the furthest behind in using advanced technology like cloud computing,” said Rick Turley, president of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage in the Bay Area. “As the largest company in our industry – and one that has a history of deploying new technological tools – we felt it was important for our company to step up and take the leadership role on this critical issue.”
Turley said the paperwork required for real estate transactions in California is “staggering,” adding up to about 800 pages for a typical sale. When you multiple that by three copies for the brokerage, the agent and the consumer, it translates into 45 million pages for a company the size of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage last year alone – the equivalent of 5,300 trees and a cost of $4.5 million.
In an effort to change all that, Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage has embarked on an ambitious corporate wide effort known as Project Greenlight to transition the company to electronic documents throughout the entire home-buying process. Coldwell Banker has hired a staff to oversee the effort, including a project manager, cloud computing administrators and cloud trainers.
The program is being tested first in the company’s Saratoga and Petaluma offices, where more than 200 sales associates work with homebuyers and sellers. Over the next year, Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage hopes to roll out the program to all 62 offices and 3,600 agents throughout Northern California.
“We think it’s fitting that we’re launching this new tech initiative here in Silicon Valley,” Turley said. “Many of our customers are early adopters of advanced technology. They’re used to conducting business on the run with smart phones and other mobile computing devices. Deploying cloud computing and moving toward a greener, paperless process is one more way to show our customers that we’re on the same page as them.”
Going completely paperless will not happen overnight for the industry’s largest real estate brokerage, Turley said. “This really is a process that will involve every single aspect of our business, from scanning existing documents and placing them in the cloud, to instituting electronic forms and eSignature processes to training thousands of agents,” he said.
“But there’s a lot we can do right away to make a difference, saving one tree at a time as we like to say,” Turley noted. “Our agents, managers and staff are all excited about this program and proud to be at the forefront of this technological and environmental evolution.”
About Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage is the largest residential real estate brokerage in Northern California and serves the markets from Monterey to Tahoe and nearly every market in between. The company has 62 office locations and more than 3,600 sales associates throughout Northern California. Last year the company handled 13.5% of all dollar volume sold in Northern California, more than double its nearest competitor. Through its internationally renowned Coldwell Banker Previews® program, the company leads the luxury home market in Northern California, representing more than 22% of all dollar volume sold of properties over $1 million. Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage is part of NRT LLC, the nation’s largest residential real estate brokerage company. NRT has 750 offices and 45,000 sales associates operating in more than 35 major metropolitan areas. A subsidiary of Realogy Corporation, NRT operates Realogy’s company-owned real estate brokerage offices. For more information please visit www.CaliforniaMoves.com or call 925.275.3085. DRE # 00313415.
Article source: http://www.pr.com/press-release/342163