The home buying process has been pretty consistent over the last 50 years. However, as technology continues to advance and millennials start looking to buy and sell more seriously, the industry is going to see some significant changes. Agents may even see new roles developing.
In the past, most home buyers found their realtor through word-of-mouth or by showing up at an open house. Nowadays, time and convenience are increasingly important, and millennials feel they don’t have the time to tour numerous homes in person. Instead, millennials are beginning the home buying process online. According to the National Association of Realtors, about 81% of millennials found their homes through a mobile app.
Millennials make up 37% of the people looking to buy houses, and that percentage is continuously rising. Agents are going to have to find ways to adjust their roles to keep up with the ever-changing industry.
“Young people want information at their fingertips, especially for homes they’re interested in.”
How is the Role of the Real Estate Agent Changing?
Young buyers may have different needs and preferences than in past generations. Some of these key preferences include walkable neighborhoods, pet-friendly homes, and technologically savvy spaces.
Walkable neighborhoods allow people to live closer to their friends, and other conveniences like coffee shops and grocery stores. They want easy access to ride-sharing, bike-sharing, and other public transportation options. Millennials have also been cited as preferring space for pets rather than space for parking. They also prefer a more modern, up-to-date technology-filled home. With these preferences in mind, real estate agents must tailor their work to helping fulfill these desires.
“New priorities include smart homes, easy access to transportation options, and space for pets.”
One of the biggest needs for millennials is to keep information at their fingertips. When young buyers look for a home online or on an app, agents will need to be ready to answer any questions about the property. Agents should gain as much information about these properties as possible, so they can share information that isn’t included on property pages.
Millennials are also interested in personalized services, so it’s important to them that you can help them even when you aren’t there in person. An emerging trend for agents is where agents specialize in a specific market, buyer, or home type. This specialization allows agents to answer questions for homebuyers more successfully and personalizes the whole process.
“Staying personal, relatable, and in the know about the preferences of millennials will be the keys to remaining successful!”
Could the Role of Real Estate Agents Disappear?
Technology is showing no signs of slowing down. More home sales are made without the help of real estate agents. Does this mean that this is the downfall of real estate agents? Absolutely not! There is still so much information that apps and websites can’t offer, and agents will help fill that information gap.
Beyond filling the information gap, apps and websites won’t be able to replace the personalized experience buyers and sellers get from working with an agent. Agents are relatable and friendly, and those are things people are looking for when they are looking to find a home. Agents add a personal touch to the search process, and that is something that can never be replaced.