While working as a General Manager at a 188 room Airport Inn in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, I had the pleasure of working for and with a lot of great people. I was fortunate to be introduced to many opportunities at a young age. At this property we were able to install one of the first PC-based point-of-sale & property management systems in the country.
We were even able to manage the property as a second use as the extention to Southern Unversity. We negotiated a multi-million dollar contract with the Chancellor to house 300 students. The property was managed both as a hotel and as an extension to fix the housing shortage for college students. The properties demand for rooms went from 40% to 100% occupancy. The rooms were double occupied and the dining rooms had two turns for seating.
Why do I bring this up? It was at this same time, I took great interest in the collaboration & sharing insight by working with a company, as a project leader by the name of The Ultimate Real-Estate Network System T.U.R.N.S., who developed a software subscription model to work in conjunction with the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) to work with the National Association of Realtors. This would later set my career path into technology solution sales, marketing and consulting full-time.
Large technology companies, like many successful small entrepreneurs for every new solution that succeeds, tens to hundreds fail. The innovations that do arise, according to observers, come primarily from entrepreneurs and small businesses.
At the time, as it is today, the value is being able to offer a network for transparent communication.
Back then the Internet, as we know it, did not exist. So providing toolkits to perform online real-estate appraisals, comp searches & reviews, and transactions possible, was very unique and disruptive – at this time it had never been done before. The investment produced a working model designed to share information with real-estate professionals to communicate and offered a user license, per office with 1 seat, for $150 per month. We know it today as the Software-as-a-Service model.
The real-estate industry processes were designed for these business segments:
- Real Estate Brokers
- Industry Affiliates
A system specifically designed to walk Appraisers, Real-estate Brokers, Lenders and Buyers & Sellers through the processes online for each step, for the purpose to perform, the industry best practices for searching, comparing and funding real-estate for completing transactions online.
- The system was populated by the appraisal real-estate data originally recorded on microfiche that was available on government county tapes ($25K per county) that was integrated with T.U.R.N.S. communication system.
- It provided the foundation for the industry to communicate and update through an online Electronic Data Interchange System for a monthly subscription license fee.
- Appraisers could update at a network level while the Sellers & Buyers who required Real Estate Comps could communicate transactions with the legal forms (Fannie-Mae and Freddie-Mac) by choosing the Lenders and for doing transactions online.
- The system provided transparent communication between resources. The security and search engine was designed to provide the industry resources for residential and commercial properties with assisting and solving the fragmented
- Industry challenges.
- It was a way for the Industry to have organized data almost in real-time back in when EDI was delayed by updating, where today it is real-time.
- Remember at that time you had to go to the library or the court house to search for records. T.U.R.N.S. was able to bring it to your desk!
The technology at the time was written in DOS, before Windows and the internet as we know it became a useful public network. This included services to share information with Affiliates (Sponsors, advertisers and other third party services that complemented the real-estate industry).
A Pioneer by the name of Robert Parker (Deceased 1994) was the investor and creator of The Ultimate Real Estate Network System T.U.R.N.S.
Robert Parker (Deceased 1994), Alan Weiner (Deceased 2001), BJ Hart, David Henderson and Michael J Rutherford. were innovators ahead of their time., where the next ten years, others would follow to compliment the industries needs by automating the communication requirement between the verticals to bring us into the 21st Century.
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