NAR just posted their survery of 2005 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers. Order it at 800/874-6500 for cheap.
Here are some of the more obvious numbers:
- 9 out of 10 home buyers use a real estate agent in the search process
- 71% of buyers use a yard sign
When asked where they first learned about the home purchased, 24% of buyers identified the Internet, up strongly from 15% in 2004 and only 2% in 1997. Although most buyers use an agent to complete the transaction, 36 first learn about the home they buy from a real estate agent and 15% from yard signs; five other categories were 7% or less.
NAR President Thomas M. Stevens from Vienna, Va., said “Buyers who use the Internet in searching for a home are more likely to use a real estate agent than non-Internet users, and consumers rely on professionals to provide context, negotiate the transaction and help with the paperwork,” said Stevens, senior vice president of NRT Inc.
More info on FSBO's is that 13% of sellers conducted transactions without the assistance of a real estate professional in 2005 (down from 18% in 1997), and 39% of those FSBO transactions were “closely held” between parties who knew each other in advance, up from 32% in 2004.
This is great sales fodder: The median home price for sellers who use an agent is 16.0% higher than a home sold directly by an owner.
“The housing market today contrasts sharply with predictions a decade ago that the Internet would ‘disintermediate’ real estate agents, including speculation that NAR membership would fall in half. In reality, it’s grown dramatically – selling real estate is not like selling a book or buying an airline ticket,” he said. Comment:True but the true bastardization of Realtor data is just now coming to fruition.
Realtor.com was the most popular Internet resource, used by 54% of buyers, followed by multiple listing service (MLS) Web sites, 50%, real estate company sites, 38%, real estate agent Web sites, 31%, and local newspaper sites, 15%; other categories were smaller.
61% of all transactions was with Married couples.
21% of homes from Single women.
9%.of homes from single men.
Unmarried couples were 7% of the sales.
Check this one out: The typical buyer visits 9 homes
They take 8 weeks to buy a home within 12 miles from their previous residence.
The typical seller placed their home on the market for 4 weeks afte rhaving lived there for for six years. They have owned 3 homes previously within 15 miles to their new residence.
In finding a real estate professional, 44% of buyers were referred by a friend, neighbor or relative, 11% used an agent from a previous transaction,
7% found an agent on the Internet,
7% met at an open house and
6% saw contact information on a “for sale” sign.
WOW! that explains all those leads and only a small conversion to sale. I just heard today that 1 in 75 people in California is a Real Estate Agent. That is why there is only 6 sides per agent according to another NAR study. Thus, if you are going to market online, you need to convert and swoon your leads to become loyal.
The most important factor in choosing an agent: 41% of homebuyers said. 24% said knowledge of the neighborhood.
Satisfaction with real estate agents is very high, with 85% of buyers saying they were likely to use the agent again. This smacks in conflict with non NAr studies that rate Real Estate agents at the bottom of most professions. This calls into question the validity of NAR's study.
As far as sellers go: 43% chose agents based on a referral by a friend, neighbor or relative, 28% were previous clients.
57% again said reputation was the most important factor in selecting an agent
94% of buyers and sellers believe their home purchase is a good financial investment. 66% use the equity from their previous home for a downpayment on a new home.
Why buy in a given location? 68% said it is close to a job or school, 43% said close to family/friends, & 36% said the school district itself.
This report offers many insites into how you can capture business offline and online.