Goodbye Yellow Brick Road

The yellow brick road heading into the Emerald City, has finally lost its shine and turned to stone this past week. If the combined dreariness of fall in the Northwest, Wamu’s funeral, and the Seahawks SLOOOOW start wasn’t enough for us to ask for Lexapro during our next doctor’s visit, the latest batch of bad news certainly is.

No sooner than the venture capitalists sound alarms bells and implore startup CEOs to save cash, slash costs, & stay alive, two of Seattle’s Real Estate 2.0 giants, Redfin & Zillow announce workforce reductions.

Zillow announced at 25% cut on Friday, while Redfin announced that it had laid off 20% of its employees last Monday. Granted, it wasn’t like things were much better in the Real Estate 1.0 world. My NWMLS database’s member table has about 3,000 fewer records than a back up from last year did. But it’s another sign that everybody expects a long & cold winter ahead.

If you were one of the few that got axed, I wish you luck finding your future life, beyond the yellow brick road.

20 thoughts on “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road

  1. While I’m sorry to see a local company cutting back (especially for those employees losing their jobs and those who invariably have to pick up extra “slack”), I was pretty shocked that Zillow had as large a staff as they did given what they do….

  2. The next ten years are going to be very difficult for many of us. While that is unfortunate, maybe it will help us get back to a more grounded existence where things such as friends and family become more important, while terms such as “equity” and “net worth” fade into the background.

  3. Cheers to that, synthetik. Friends and family members will need to pull together and be supportive during these times, which will make an impression on us similiar to those who went through the Great Depression.

    Do you really feel this will take 10 years to wash out? What is that figure based on?

  4. After surviving the dot com boom & great tech wreck of 2000-2002, I still don’t think we’ve recovered from the last recession yet.

    I wonder which real estate tech company will be next to let staff go? Trulia doesn’t appear to be planning to cut staff at the moment.

    At least the job market for Software Engineers in Seattle still seems somewhat healthy, so hopefully they won’t be unemployed for long.

    PS – If anybody from Zillow or Redfin is interested in Exchanging their career. Let me know… πŸ˜‰

  5. Warren Buffet converted his Treasuries to cash. He is on a buying spree. And so are my clients after telling them No, No, No for years.

  6. Roger, I don’t think he ever started drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

    Um, Wow. That may be the only thing in that article I can refute.

  7. Those are large layoffs for Zillow and Redfin, hopefully for Seattle’s sake they can make it through this down cycle and come out stronger on the other side. There will probably be some consolidation in that area and hopefully some bolder moves.

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