How tech shifts are reshaping real estate

Plus, why rate cuts are likely NOT coming soon

Know your worth

We’ve got a jam-packed newsletter today full of important news and interesting updates. All these stories show that, because our industry is constantly changing, it’s so vital to stay up to speed on all the latest developments.

Of course, the biggest development this year has been the fallout from the NAR settlement. Agents will now have to demonstrate their value to potential clients more than ever. 

While we think the value of having an agent is a big “no duh”, we’ve decided to lay out four key tenets that simply and indisputably prove why we’re valuable. Scroll down to today’s Foundation Plans. We suggest committing these to memory so you’ll always have a slam-dunk answer to that (...ridiculous) question.

- James and David

Rising inflation will likely delay rate cuts 

Overall inflation rose by 0.4% month-over-month and by 3.5% year-over-year, according to the BLS’s latest CPI report. Both metrics came in higher than the expected 0.3% MOM and 3.4% YOY growth. This makes it almost certain the Fed won’t cut rates in June. Already, mortgage rates have jumped to 7.37%, the highest since November of last year. 

Core CPI, which excludes food and energy prices, also came in higher than expectations, rising 0.4% month-over-month (3.8% YOY) versus the predicted 0.3% (3.7% YOY).

40% of the growth in core CPI is due to shelter inflation (or housing costs). Based on real time rent data, shelter inflation declined, but not to the degree market rent data would predict.

Our take

As we feared, rental prices contributed to a hotter-than-expected CPI report. It’s possible that, due to the way the BLS calculates CPI inflation, these numbers are delayed and need more time to catch up. Another explanation: these divergent trends are caused by differences between CPI and market rent data. Whatever the case, it’s very likely interest rates are going to stay higher for longer, and so will mortgage rates.

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Where high mortgage rates are having the smallest impact

Boomer homeowners and those living in less expensive metros are least deterred by the lock-in effect of high mortgage rates. That’s the central conclusion reached by Zillow in its latest report. Here are the other key takeaways:

  • 10.8 million people (or 13% of homeowners) are immune to the effects of high mortgage rates. They are mortgage debt-free, and earn a high enough income to afford a home if they bought today.

  • Boomers and the Silent Generation (born between 1928 and 1945) are the most likely to be unaffected by the lock-in effect

  • Metros with a higher share of homeowners deterred by the lock-in effect (like San Diego, San Jose, and Los Angeles) had larger declines in new listings

  • Metros with the highest percentage of rate-lock free homeowners:

Our take

We all know homeowners move for many reasons aside from income and lack of mortgage debt. There are major life events like divorce, new jobs, changes in family size, etc. But Zillow’s research shows a clear correlation between the share of homeowners who are mortgage debt-free and the change in new listings since early 2022 when interest rates soared. Locales or metros with a higher percentage of homeowners affected by the lock-in effect had larger declines in new listings.

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Priciest home markets in the U.S.

In February 2020, the typical home in the 1,000 most expensive U.S. neighborhoods ranged from $1.1 million to about $10.6 million. Now, the entry point to move to a top neighborhood is $1.3 million. 

7 of the ritziest home markets in the U.S. are now in Florida, reports Bloomberg. A home in the most expensive spot in the country, Gables Estates in Coral Gables near Miami, exceeds $21.1 million.

Here are the 10 most expensive neighborhoods and their typical home values:




Typical Value (Million)


Gables Estates

Coral Gables



Port Royal




Beverly Hills Gateway

Beverly Hills



Paradise Coe




Old Cutler Bay

Coral Gables



San Marino Island

Miami Beach



Palm Island

Miami Beach



The Flats

Beverly Hills



Aqualane Shore




Rivo Alto Island

Miami Beach


Our take

This trend shouldn’t come as a surprise. Tech and finance giants are helping to fuel Florida's hot real-estate market. Apple, for example, is taking a new 45,000-square-foot office in Coral Gables. The share of all tech-industry jobs located in California has now fallen to some of its lowest levels in a decade, dropping a full percentage point over the last year alone. If California and New York want to retain these businesses, they will need to change their tax and regulatory environment, as well as their restrictive housing policies.

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The news that just missed the cut

Foundation Plans

Advice from James and David to win the day

In today’s environment, it’s crucial for agents to articulate the value they bring to potential clients, especially buyers. We have boiled it down to these four keys. We recommended committing these to memory, and making this part of your pitch:

Agents provide guidance from start to finish

Both sellers and buyers are hungry for guidance. Survey after survey proves it. The right agent will guide their clients through everything from start to finish. Given our training, experience, and expertise, agents know the ins and outs of the buying process. The landscape of real estate transactions is ever-changing, so it’s crucial to have the best and latest advice to make informed decisions.

Agents provide local expert knowledge

We live in an age with an abundance of data, but what people need is clarity on how to act on that data. Agents can offer that insight, and help clients understand how current market trends apply to their unique circumstances. Knowing the national trends can help, but it’s vital to know exactly what’s happening in that specific market, and only a local expert can do that. 

Agents help you get the most bang for your buck

What’s a home’s real value? What’s the best offer? Is there more to a house than meets the eye? These are questions only an expert agent can answer. No one wants to overpay or undersell, so it’s essential for clients to have an agent who can help them get to the right price. You’ve got to understand the local market to know what’s fair and competitive, and a local agent can best do that.

Agents protect you and have your back 

Housing is one of the most regulated markets in our economy. Agents have your back by reviewing contracts and reading the fine print for you. Agents act as your shield, deciphering contracts and disclosures. They ensure you understand every detail before signing, preventing hidden issues that could derail the deal. Buying or selling a home can be one of the biggest financial decisions a person can make, going it alone isn’t a risk you just shouldn’t take. 

As you can tell, we have a lot to say on this subject and we’ll be sharing more in due course. But drop us a line. What do you think about what we have to say? What are your thoughts, disagreements, or questions? We want to hear from you.

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Just in Case

Keep the latest industry data in your back pocket with today’s mortgage rates:

Source: Mortgage News Daily

That’s it for this edition of the Blueprint!

Remember: each day is a gift and a new opportunity to lead the life you want and to become the person you want to be. The mistakes and missteps you’ve made in the past don’t define you. Live as intentionally as you can and be ruthlessly focused on the goals you’ve set out to achieve. You can do it!

Have a fantastic weekend, and we’ll see you back here on Tuesday! 

- James and David