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The ChatGPT Onslaught: Should Real Estate Professionals Fear It or Embrace It?

History tells us that resistance to technological progress is strongest from people who will be displaced by it.

In simple terms, ChatGPT is an AI language model/chatbot designed to generate human-like text responses to a wide range of questions and prompts. The chatbot engine culls vast amounts of data from the internet, including books, articles and websites. It’s part of a family of language models that belong to OpenAI. OpenAI was founded in 2015 by several high-profile individuals, including Elon Musk, Sam Altman, Greg Brockman and Ilya Sutskever.

So, should we fear it or embrace it? That depends on the generation we’re referring to. If we’re referring to Generations X and Y (millennials), we shouldn’t worry because they will not fully adopt AI as a means to purchase real estate. In fact, studies show that they still need a real estate expert (or their parents) to guide them through a big decision such as a home purchase.

If we’re referring to Generations Z, A, B, we can see this technology’s full adaptation as a comprehensive means to conduct real estate transactions without the need for a human. Considering that the average age of a first-time buyer is 32, we’re looking to see major changes as early as 2030 and stretching to 2055—a time when we may be replaced. Lawyers are also on the chopping block if we get to the point where we see ChatGPT legally represent a client in court.

There’s one way you can use AI for your real estate business right now. Let’s say you want to come up with a convincing listing description for a home you’re about to upload on the MLS. All you need to do is prompt ChatGPT to “Write a listing description with the following highlights: (list of highlights)” and, within seconds, it writes this eloquent paragraph that you can simply edit (or not), copy and paste. You can try it for yourself, as it’s free…at least for now.

What does it look like in the near future? OpenAI is looking into creating chatbots that will help agents with lead generation by following up with leads, asking lead-specific questions and scheduling appointments for the agent all in one service.

Property searches will no longer look like your typical present-day searches. They will be more enhanced, with automated personal recommendations based on keyword-search behavior, desired and undesired property selections.

This will result in better customer support, where lead responses will be instant and human-like, thus improving the overall customer experience. OpenAI can automatically provide daily, weekly and monthly market insights such as housing prices, interest rates and inventory levels of a certain community.

ChatGPT, specifically AI, is not new to the real estate industry. There are already major companies using the OpenAI language model to help real estate agents. As ChatGPT continues to evolve, it’s likely to become an essential tool for agents looking to stay ahead of the curve in an increasingly competitive industry. For example, I spent nearly two hours writing this article, while ChatGPT would have done it for me in one minute.

Interesting times ahead.

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