Young people are entering the real estate industry in waves, and among them is a new breed of tech-friendly enthusiasts who believe digital is today and tomorrow’s path to success. Yet, with new tech tools introduced almost daily to the real estate market, identifying and adopting only the most valuable digital assets becomes a challenge … and sometimes with very little return on investment.
Five years ago, Jesicca Skoloda, a degreed business major who worked about 70 hours a week managing a jewelry store, decided she had more to bring to the table. Recognizing her aptitude for generating business, her love of technological tools, and her entrepreneurial spirit, Jesicca set out to earn her real estate license.
Today, Jesicca is within the top one percent of producers for the Luzerne County Association of REALTORS® and is consistently a Top Producer at Classic Properties—a company that serves more than five Pennsylvania counties with about 100 agents. Jesicca, 30, has already sold nearly 20 million dollars in real estate since entering the industry.
To what does this rising star and chair of her local Young Professionals Network (YPN) attribute her good fortune? In addition to intrinsic qualities such as self-determination, energy, and confidence, Jesicca says her success stems from a willingness to embrace the tools that keep her and her clients informed and on track.
Folio is a plug-in from Gmail that helps busy real estate agents organize and manage transactions right from their email inbox. When connected, Folio analyzes your inbox for keywords and phrases that identify that an email thread is about a transaction. It then automatically categorizes the emails, files, and contacts related to each transaction.
“It’s incredible,” said Jesicca. “Once the folder is created, Folio knows which emails belong in which folders and groups them together. It puts together timelines, keeps calendars, and prompts me when tasks need to be addressed. It even connects my clients with resources such as inspectors and lenders.
“I don’t know how I functioned before Folio but do know that it has definitely made me more efficient and freed me up to take on more business.”
Managing real estate transactions “on the go” has never been easier. The zipForm app keeps transactions readily accessible, no matter where the day takes you. From a mobile device, real estate professionals can create transactions, import listing data, send e-signatures, and much more.
“When I login to zipForm, all of my most recent transactions are listed, plus, I’m able to create listing and sales agreements with templates that automatically populate information, which is a great time-saver,” said Jesicca.
“But the best part is that I can go back and forth between zipForm and Realtors Property Resource® (RPR®) on either my desktop or the app. No matter where I am, I can pull up RPR on my phone, instantly see my property, and click one button to start a zipForm transaction with those fields auto populated.”
Realtors Property Resource® (RPR®)
RPR’s app greatly enhances a REALTOR®’s ability to conduct on-location property searches, analyze hundreds of relevant data sets, and instantly create client-friendly, decision-prompting reports … anytime, anywhere.
“I am so grateful to have RPR as a REALTOR® benefit,” said Jesicca. “Until this great app came along, I had to go to many different sources to capture what is now housed under one roof, in RPR.
“The Federal Fair Housing Act prohibits agents from commenting on schools or steering consumers toward certain neighborhoods. With the app, wherever we are, I can pull up my property and instantly send my client information like who lives in a neighborhood and how the schools rate. It’s great for new people moving to an area.”
“And the RPR website is my go-to tool for flood zone information,” said Jesicca. “Our county has experienced severe flooding over past decades and, because of that, the FEMA maps are constantly changing. I’ve always found the RPR maps to be accurate and up to date. This is critically important when I’m working with sellers who believe they are grandfathered into non-flood zone areas because they bought their homes so long ago … when their property wasn’t listed on the maps.
“I look through all of my flood zone sources and then confirm it with RPR. And it’s always been right.”