In this blog post, we've put the spotlight on real estate company Metis. Founded by Rickey Soriano and Wallace Chane, the two set out to create a different type of experience, for clients engaging in real estate.
In our Q&A interview with President/CEO/Broker, Rickey Soriano of Metis, you'll learn about the origin, vision and the entrepreneurial spirit of Metis.
1. Tell us about the origin of Metis and how did you come up with the name?
It was September 7th, 2013 and I was up late finishing up some work. Afterwards I sat in my home office and thought about the future, as I often do, and pondered the idea of reimagining the brokerage model for todays modern world. I started to T-chart the traditional model and found areas I thought could be improved on. It was after this exercise that I realized I just unintentionally created the blue-prints for a new kind of real estate brokerage. I loved everything about it and decided that I needed to bring this to the market so my future clients could benefit from it. I brought the idea to my good friend Wallace Chane, who is extremely experienced with real estate marketing and tech as I wanted a different perspective on the idea. He loved the concept and was excited about it. We decided to partner up together as our strengths and weaknesses were balanced out. It’s been full-speed ahead ever since. The fundamental idea behind Metis is to simplify and streamline the process while reducing overhead wherever possible all while offering a high quality, full service representation at a lower fee the client would appreciate. It was very important to me that the name encapsulated these core ideas and values. I looked into Greek mythological figures to see if there was a character that fit and to my surprise there was. Metis, is the titaness of good counsel, advice, planning, and wisdom.
2. Barry Li (Design Rehab) worked with you on the branding (who also designed my website/logo/brand), tell us about that experience.
We regrettably did not contact Barry / Design Rehab from the get-go. After receiving our brand from a previous designer (which we were completely unhappy with), we contacted Barry as we believed he could deliver the brand we envisioned. I (Rickey) met with Barry on a warm sunny day in San Francisco to talk to him about the process. He asked very deep and insightful questions, more relating to philosophy than business. From that first meeting I knew he was going to just nail it and I was right. After a few revisions, the Metis brand was born. Barry is masterful at his craft and would whole heartedly recommend him. The entire process was educational and painless.
3. As an entrepreneur, what was the problem you saw in your industry, that you set out to solve?
There’s a lot of fragmentation in the industry by nature. Each agent is an independent contractor and conducts business in their own way. Brokerages do their best to enforce quality measures and brandconsistency, but it’s hard when the agent wants to do things his or her way. Pricing is also subjective from one agent to the other. We’re building a more cohesive and consistent experience for consumers. As we continue to grow and expand, we’re looking to hire fresh, motivated professionals and pay them a competitive salary, thus controlling the quality and process all the way through. Our goal is to provide the best real estate experience to everyone. While all commissions are negotiable, we thought we’d put our best foot forward from the beginning and charge a flat 4% fee instead of fighting for the traditional 6% as is customary.
4. What sets Metis apart from any other real estate company?
The traditional brokerage is focused on gaining and retaining real estate agents. There is usually a sizable office that is leased to provide a workplace for the agents to conduct their business. Each agent has a commission split with their brokerage and most brokerages charge a desk/office/tech fee, thus motivating the agent to charge as close to 6% as possible to make up for these costs and overhead expenses. Metis, on the other hand operates with a lean start-up mentality. We’re entirely paperless which allows us to greatly reduce our footprint as we don’t need the large office, printers, faxes, paper and staff to operate it all. Metis is focused on efficiency, and leveraging technology all in a manner that allows us to provide a no-compromise, full-service listing experience at a fee of only 4%.
5. Metis primarily works with clients who are looking to sell their property. Coming from this end of the industry, what are some insights about the market, that may be helpful for people looking to purchase property?
While we are seller focused, we do currently represent buyers on a strictly referral basis. Germel would be able to make the introduction if you need it ;) Shameless solicitation aside, we believe the client should be well educated on the entire process and make sure their expectations are properly set. It is very competitive out there for buyers as multiple offer situations are commonplace in most micro-markets, however, we’ll work with them and their timeline to ensure they’re not rushed into making a bad decision or offer.
6. Is the current market one for buyers or sellers?
Sellers are taking advantage of extremely low levels of inventory and the high demand for property, while buyers are taking advantage of really low interest rates which is fueling the demand. It is definitely a seller’s market.
This post was done in collaboration with Rosey Gonzales