There’s a shift happening in real estate. A new generation of homebuyers is entering the market with unique values and demands. New tools and technologies are dramatically changing how, when and where real estate business gets done. And the entire real estate profession is going paperless — which presents a whole new set of opportunities and challenges for the real estate industry.
Here’s a closer look into these real estate trends to help you grow your business.
1. Millennials are Entering the Housing Market
This generational shift is important for the real estate industry because, in 2014, millennials represented the largest group of homebuyers for the second year in a row, at more than 32% according to a recent NAR Generational Survey. And overtime, millennials will become an even larger portion of homebuyers.
One of the most important traits to understand about millennials is their lack of trust in sales and advertising. A study from Forbes.com found that only 1% of millennials say a powerful ad would increase their trust of a brand — while the overwhelming majority believes that marketing and sales are all spin.
Millennials tend to trust content written by their peers, relying mostly on reviews from blogs and other social media sites, referencing them before they make a purchase.
What does this mean for real estate agents and brokers?
This means agents and brokers should consider shifting focus from high-pressure pitches and glossy ads to cultivating closer relationships with millennial clients and building their online credibility via review sites, social media channels and maybe even keeping a relevant blog.
2. Real Estate Customers Are Going Mobile
The mobile era is here, and virtually all of your customers — not just the tech-savvy millennials — use mobile devices every day to stay connected.
What does this mean for the real estate industry?
That means the real estate industry must continually create more mobile solutions for comparing homes and neighborhoods for clients, communicating with other agents, and closing deals.
The increased use of mobile technology also means your clients will expect to communicate easily with you, no matter where you are. In real estate, time is of the essence, so clients will expect you to have a fast way to sign and return purchase agreements, such as with a free mobile fax app. They won’t care where you are — they’ll expect responses fast.
3. Going Paperless
Real estate has always been a paper-driven industry — from MLS listings and appraisals to escrow documents and purchase agreements – but not for long.
More and more businesses are making the move to paperless. Going paperless can mean storing documents, accessing client information and sharing listings digitally or from the cloud.
A great way to ease into a paperless business for real estate professionals like you – while simultaneously addressing mobility and the millennial generation - is with eFax.
eFax helps real estate professionals receive, sign and send faxes by email or online — without having to scan or print. This can help turn a paper intensive process into a digital format easily accessible from anywhere, even on a smartphone.
Here’s how a real estate professional who uses eFax explained what the service has done for him:
"I noticed in my last two case files I had not printed any of the contract forms. They were already saved by eFax in my smart phone for easy access."
— Jeff A.
Now that you have a better understanding of the trends that are affecting the real estate industry, you can see how a fully-featured online faxing service like eFax is the right solution to help your business grow. Try it today!