For the past 40 years, the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) has published key statistics and findings about the real estate industry and related consumer demographics and behaviors in the Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers. This annual report is a valuable reference tool for real estate professionals, and insights garnered from the data can inform your business for the year ahead. Here are a few examples of how to translate these findings into practice:
- Eighty-seven percent of buyers used an agent to help them purchase a home; 90% of sellers used an agent to sell their home.
Since the vast majority of both buyers and sellers work with agents on their real estate transactions, you can rest assured that the services you offer are sought after and in demand. But with consumer demand comes competition. Find ways to differentiate yourself from other agents, such as earning the ABR® designation and seeking out additional education to hone your skills.
- Buyers typically purchased their homes for 100% of the asking price, with 29% purchasing for more than asking price.
Educating your buyer clients on the shifts and realities of the current market is critical so that you can work together to come up with an attractive offer. This can also be an opportunity to strengthen your connections to seller’s agents in your region to facilitate a productive and smooth negotiation.
- Nearly half (47%) of buyers used an agent that was referred to them by a friend, neighbor or relative, and 13% used an agent that they had worked with in the past to buy or sell a home. The typical seller has recommended their agent twice since selling their home. Twenty-seven percent of sellers recommended their agent four or more times since selling their home.
Referrals and word of mouth still reign supreme in the real estate business. Translate this knowledge into practice by leveraging “top-of-mind” marketing tactics so that you stay in touch with former clients and contacts. Keep those connections warm with activities, such as engaging on social media, sending “houseaversary” cards or reaching out via email to remind them when their warranties are expiring.
- Nearly three-quarters (73%) of buyers interviewed only one real estate agent during their home search. Eighty-two percent of recent sellers contacted only one agent before finding the agent they worked with to sell their home.
Clearly, the early bird gets the worm. Find ways to increase your response time to prospects and connect with them ASAP. Solidify your elevator pitch so that it clearly communicates your value and what you offer.
I encourage you to take a deeper look at the 2021 Profile and mine the content for actionable insights. And remember, the Center for REALTOR® Development is here to support you with the education and resources you need to translate these findings into practice, better serve your clients and grow your business.
Jennifer Rzeszewski is the vice president of Member Development and the executive director of the Center for REALTOR® Development (CRD), NAR’s home for exceptional education. Learn more about CRD at crd.realtor.