Editor’s note: The following is a response to a question posed by Inman News as a part of the Roadmap to Recovery editorial project. This project seeks to engage real estate industry visionaries in charting a course for the future of the real estate industry. Click here for more details.

Editor’s note: The following is a response to a question posed by Inman News as a part of the Roadmap to Recovery editorial project. This project seeks to engage real estate industry visionaries in charting a course for the future of the real estate industry. Click here for more details.

This past month the unthinkable happened in our resort town of Bend, Ore. Two long-standing name-brand brokerages constricted out of the Bend marketplace. I was one of the unlucky agents to find myself interviewing with new principal brokers … and questioning the validity of the brokerage business model.

To survive in today’s market you must be nimble and sure-footed, with a firm grasp on where your market is coming from and what your sellers are expecting from you in this new media generation.

The brokerage model fails because its focus is "THE BROKERAGE," not the individual agents who must create their own momentum, separate from that of the larger corporation.

I believe the new model for the industry will be a grand throwback to the ages of true network marketing, paired with the new generation of media capitalization as my generation lives on the Web. Monthly desk fees, coupled with the enormous "nut" to crack at brokerages, simply doesn’t jive with capable, entrepreneurial, well-adjusted business brokers of 2009.

What would happen if the crème de la crème in each city formed their own network and readjusted their business to revolve around a collaboration of product, clients and marketing aimed at specific target markets? That, my friends, would be a revolution.

Alisha Alway Braatz is a broker for Sunriver Realty in Bend, Ore.

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