A new real estate industry survey has uncovered significant insights into what the home buying & selling process is like for Americans, as well as trends that the company believes will influence the industry in 2020.
The survey, from Century 21 Real Estate, found that agents added value during the transaction, such as providing information about the market and navigating the overall process, for 99% of the homebuyers surveyed.
On the homeseller side, those who used an agent to help complete their transaction rated knowledge of the market (73%), advice and counsel (72%) and navigating stress (53%) as the top benefits provided.
However, despite the significance placed on an agent’s value and the importance of homeownership itself, the survey revealed that, on average, active buyers and sellers only interviewed two agents before deciding on who to ultimately hire.
“We’re seeing a real disconnect within the real estate industry today where homebuyers and sellers are extremely invested in the outcome of their transaction, yet they seem to be shortchanging themselves on the front end by rushing the vetting process to find the right agent to help them navigate what for most is the biggest emotional and financial decision in their life,” said Mike Miedler, president and CEO, Century 21 Real Estate LLC.
Those who do not invest time upfront in choosing a qualified agent run the risk of aligning themselves with an advisor that could leave them less than satisfied with the level of service provided.
34% Unlikely to Rehire Agent
According to the survey, which included responses from 500 U.S. homebuyers and 500 U.S. homesellers who completed a real estate transaction in 2018 or 2019, 34% of recent buyers are not very likely to rehire the real estate agent they just worked with.
This data point highlights the mediocrity that remains throughout the industry, said Miedler.
“Defying the mediocrity that still exists in the real estate industry is a major part of our mission and every potential homebuyer or seller should be extremely selective in whom they entrust to shepherd them through this complicated process,” he said.
The survey, conducted by Wakefield Research, also revealed that 70% of Americans rank buying a home as one of their top three greatest life achievements. In fact, buying a home was second only to getting married (76%) in terms of top life achievements.
Additional survey results include:
Agree to disagree: Only 17% of couples in a relationship said the decision on which real estate agent to use was made evenly.
Shoulda, coulda, woulda: When asked to indicate what could have helped them get a higher price for their home, 29% of recent sellers said a better negotiation strategy, 25% selected professional staging and 23% indicated that a knowledgeable real estate agent would have helped boost their home’s sale price.
Fear of abandonment: Since closing on a home, 23% of people who used a real estate agent said that their agent had not reached out to make contact with them. When compared to how often an agent makes contact during the transaction process (3 times per week, on average), recent homebuyers may be feeling a bit abandoned after they get the keys to their new home.
Agent selection is significant: Three-in-5 buyers (60%) said their agent went above and beyond the normal call of duty, including taking them out for a meal or drink (31%), inviting them to a social event (29%), introducing a potential neighbor (20%) and even running errands (13%).
Patience is a virtue: 92% of recent homesellers agree that their agent was very patient throughout the emotional ups and downs of the homebuying process.
The CENTURY 21 Survey was conducted by Wakefield Research (wakefieldresearch.com) among 500 U.S. home buyers and 500 U.S. home sellers, between Oct. 16 and Oct. 23, 2019, using an email invitation and an online survey.
Source: Century 21