Communication is one of the key parts of a realtor’s job. As a realtor, you deal with many people with widely varying personality types. But you’re also dealing with people of different ages. As more millennials move to buy their first home, you’ll need to understand how to deal with them.
Millennials are the generation born from 1981 to 1996. Younger millennials have still grown up in a different world than older millennials. But several threads tie this young generation together. Many of the things that define the millennial generation are important ones for realtors to remember when dealing with them.
Tech Allows Millennials To Play A More Active Role
There are few millennial trends more meaningful to realtors than the tech boom. Their widespread use of online resources and tools has allowed millennials to take a more active role in the homebuying process.
The Zillow Group’s Consumer Housing Report has shed light on several facts realtors need to keep in mind. Millennials are even more likely than the younger Generation Z to go online to search for houses. 88% of millennials used online resources to search for a new home, compared with 84% of Gen Zers, 79% of Gen Xers, and 70% of Baby Boomers. You should assume that your millennial prospects are looking online and can see any (and all) online literature about you.
48% of millennials also stated that their realtor’s online reviews and ratings are very or extremely important when evaluating an agent. So, if you run or work for any business serving millennials, you should work to prove your transparency online. Platforms like the Better Business Bureau and Google Reviews are go-to sources of information.
If you want to keep up with the competition, you should be active and responsive on many channels including:
- Phone and SMS
Millennials are well-connected to their networks through social media. Many of them have many acquaintances they can talk to before making big decisions. In fact, many millennials are connected to realtors through friends, family, and casual acquaintances. But even if someone refers a millennial client to you, you might still lose the opportunity to work with them.
When you’re trying to get millennials’ attention, you’ll need to work harder. You need to grab their attention as quickly as possible or they’ll move on quickly. Social media and search engine ads, when crafted well, are a great way to reach millennial audiences.
You can engage with people you know and potential buyers without paid ads as well. With a Twitter or Facebook profile, you can create a page for yourself and interact with your followers. Just make sure you’re responsive and offer them the information and support they need. When it comes to advertising, ads and normal posts on Instagram can grab attention. Use the best pictures you can find and share them with your followers on Instagram.
Millennials exercise more caution on the internet and at their showings than other generations. According to the same Consumer Housing Report, millennials interview an average of 2.7 agents before hiring them. Baby boomers, by comparison, interview an average of 1.6.
Millennials are more cautious about choosing a realtor or any other kind of agent simply because they can be. They have access to limitless information thanks to the web, and they know how to use it.
To get millennials to trust you more, you’ll need to be transparent and helpful. Make sure you have a good professional photo. Then, using your website to provide valuable information will help you build trust and authority. The more useful information you can provide, the better. So, it’s best to go the full mile and make your site, LinkedIn, and other social media profiles are as professional as possible.
Older millennials are trying to purchase larger homes when they can. A significant driver of that trend is the simple fact that many of them are now raising a family.
It Might Not Be Their Ideal Home
Homeownership is less common among millennials, but it’s also less common among all generations. The reason for this is simple: homeownership has become more expensive, while wages have not kept up. But most millennials still want to own homes, and 2020 still seems like a good time to do so.
The 2020 Fannie Mae National Housing Survey revealed that low mortgage interest rates are the most popular incentive to buy a home. However, unfavorable economic conditions and high home prices are why many are forgoing on homeownership for now. And most millennials looking to buy a home right now are first-time homebuyers.
While millennials are by no means bad with money, many have outstanding debt. Credit card and student loan debt are the most common financial struggles millennials face. The average credit score for a millennial is just 625. This means more millennials will qualify for FHA mortgages. However, debt also means that many will delay purchasing their first home. But that doesn’t mean they won’t aim for a bigger and better home if they can afford one. The trend is that millennials are willing to compromise more than their older counterparts.
They Just Need A Helping Hand
First-time homebuyers that move out of their parents’ home later than members of older generations naturally are a bit more nervous about the leap to independence. The share of millennials that fit that description was 22% in 2012. But according to the 2020 Generational Trends Report, almost a third of younger millennials lived with friends or their parents. Many of them didn’t pay rent in their last home.
Buying a home you own yourself is a big step for younger millennials. Even among older millennials, only a third have already owned a home. It’s a realtor’s job to make the home buying process as easy as possible. The same trends report shows that millennials’ biggest concern about buying a home is understanding the steps they need to take to do so. Make sure you’re very clear when communicating with millennials and try to ease their stress.
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