5 Must-Haves for High-End Buyers

With more home gadgets being unveiled each year, there’s are now an overwhelming number of features that a home can be equipped with. This is especially true with luxury properties, as high-end buyers have more specific wants than a typical homebuyer. Here are the top five things that are on luxury buyers’ must-have list.

#1. Latest Tech

With technology becoming more accessible and advanced, it has also made its way from our pockets and into our homes. Systems like Amazon Alexa or Google Home serve as a voice command assistant. Another big trend has been digital, and even mobile, smart-home security systems such as the Ring Video Doorbell. These smart security systems can even be activated remotely from ones’ smartphone, creating not only simplicity but also a sense of security for homeowners.

#2. Privacy 

Along with added in-home security, high-end buyers are not afraid to pay more for their own privacy. This gives you an idea of how to set up home searches for such clients. Privacy features that these buyers are looking for include gated communities, ample security features, tall gates, barriers and privacy hedgerows around the property.

#3. Modern Kitchens

One of the main hubs in any home is the kitchen, so these areas must be up to par with buyers’ wants. High-end buyers want their kitchens outfitted with large white cabinets along with white quartz countertops. Stainless steel appliances remain king, along with a sizable kitchen island. Another trend in kitchens is dark hardwood floors and brighter LED lighting.

#4. Designer Names

There’s been a trend in residential towers, and that is the association of residential buildings with a major luxury brand. One example is the Aston Martin Residences tower in Miami, Florida. Amenities here include two cinemas, an art gallery, a virtual golf room and an exclusive yacht marina. These buyers aren’t afraid to spend more for luxury residences or their amenities, which also gives you more options for new construction.

#5. Fitness and Health

Luxury amenities don’t have to be all about the glitz and glamour. Many buyers have fitness goals or overall health concerns, which is why luxury home builders have taken note and incorporated amenities to check that box. This includes spaces such as yoga studios, spa lounges and even boxing rooms.

Almost every homebuyer has a checklist in mind when looking for a new home, and luxury buyers are no different. However, their checklist may vary a bit from the rest. These are five major points of interest for them, and they’re not afraid to shell out more money to get them. With that in mind, it’s key that you customize your home search process to align with the desires of higher-end buyers.

Learn more about how to better serve luxury home buyers with a seven-day free trial of AgentEDU and check out the “Representing Buyers” course.

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AgentEDU® is a platform where agents at every level can come to watch 10-minute video courses for the many situations that successful agents must master. From essential to advanced level and everything in between, AgentEDU® courses help agents become top producers with increased earnings and a plan for continued growth. For a 7-day free trial sign up here.

AgentEDU® is an Agent Publishing brand. For nearly two decades, Agent Publishing has been committed to providing residential real estate professionals with the information and training required to build successful and meaningful careers in their local markets. Agent Publishing’s influence extends to every career stage and reaches agents across print, digital, events and online learning.

How to Deliver Better Service to Gen Z Buyers

Agents need to better understand the particular needs and aspirations that buyers have when it comes to homebuying in order for the process to be smooth. That may be even more true when you’re dealing with younger clients, specifically those in the Gen Z demographic (born mid-1990s to mid-2000s).

This blog entry lays out the homebuying concerns that Gen Zs have, as well as how they stack up against other age demographics like Generation X. We’ll also provide tips on how to better serve this age group effectively.

Gen Z’s Homebuying Obstacles

In a recent survey by PropertyShark, 83 percent of Gen Z respondents said they see themselves entering the real estate market within the next five years. This comes on the heels of approximately 100,000 Gen Z homebuyers. That figure is only posed to increase; however, it doesn’t come without some potential roadblocks. A notable takeaway from the survey is that Gen Z sees student debt as their biggest obstacle, with almost a third (32 percent) stating it’s their biggest obstacle to buying a home. This is a significant contrast to the only 7 percent of Gen Xers who reported the same issue.

The second largest obstacle for Gen Zs is coming up with a down payment for their home. This is an area that many age demographics agree is a roadblock, as 31 percent of Gen Xers and 35 percent of millennials reported the same. Interestingly, unlike Gen Xers and millennials, Gen Z does not see increasing home prices as a significant obstacle in buying a home. While 14 percent of Gen Xers and 13 percent of millennials see this as a potential roadblock, only 5 percent of Gen Z reported the same.

Another brighter side for Gen Z is that only 1.2 percent of Gen Z homeowners are more than 60 days late on mortgage payments. This compares to the 1.6 percent of baby boomers and millennials and 2.3 percent of Gen Xers.

Gen Z Aspire to Different Things

Gen Zs have a different aspirational lifestyle compared to millennials. One area of difference is the amount of space they want; where Gen Z wants their homes to be 2,081 square feet on average, that’s 200 feet more than millennials.

Other areas in a home search that Gen Z value are: location, parking spaces, lifestyle amenities, smart appliances and smart homes. The report went onto state, “Considering the youth of Gen Z, the importance of smart systems is likely to increase as more of their cohort enters the housing market.”

Optimistic About Homebuying

One area that may spell bad news for smaller, rural markets, is the urban lifestyle that Gen Z aspires to. In a similar response to millennials, 30 percent of Gen Z say they want to live in large metro areas whereas 60 percent want to live in suburban areas, leaving only 10 percent for rural markets. Living at home is still what’s most practical for many millennials and Gen Zers;  they’re doing so while also saving money to afford their own home. The report found that 40 percent of Gen Z respondents said the biggest reason they stay home is to save up money.

In all, Gen Z is considered the most optimistic about owning a home while also getting the lifestyle they want. Although they’re coming into the homebuying process with extra baggage, and specific desires, as an agent you can adapt to every buyer’s needs. Moreover, communication is key in not only establishing common ground with your Gen Z buyer but also helping them keeping their options open with flexibility.

Understanding their obstacles and formatting your services to better assist a Gen Z buyer can make the process much smoother, which can also lead to future contacts via recommendation. To learn more about better representing your buyers and best practices for any situation, begin your seven-day free trial of AgentEDU and gain access to our essential, “Representing Buyers” track.

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AgentEDU® is a platform where agents at every level can come to watch 10-minute video courses for the many situations that successful agents must master. From essential to advanced level and everything in between, AgentEDU® courses help agents become top producers with increased earnings and a plan for continued growth. For a 7-day free trial sign up here.

AgentEDU® is an Agent Publishing brand. For nearly two decades, Agent Publishing has been committed to providing residential real estate professionals with the information and training required to build successful and meaningful careers in their local markets. Agent Publishing’s influence extends to every career stage and reaches agents across print, digital, events and online learning.

Do You Know Who Your Buyers are and What Challenges They Face?

While honing your craft as a real estate agent is important, it’s also vital that you understand the demographics that are driving today’s market. This blog will explain who is dominating the current housing market, offering tips on how to be the best agent for any situation.

Who’s Buying

The National Association of Realtors’ 2018 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers found that married couples continue to make up the majority of buyers at roughly 63 percent. The next largest chunk are single females, making up 18 percent of the market. This is on par with their 2017 report. Some trends shifted from 2017, however. For example, single male buyers made some traction by going up from 7 percent to 8 percent of all buyers. Another slight shift was that first-time home buyers fell from 34 percent to 33 percent in this latest report.

When it comes to buying the actual home, single males tend to spend more on homes than single females. Unmarried men clocked in with a median home sale price of $215,000, while single women buyers had a median home sale price of $189,000.

Challenges for Buyers

NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun stated, “With the lower end of the housing market – smaller, moderately priced homes – seeing the worst of the inventory shortage, first-time home buyers who want to enter the market are having difficulty finding a home they can afford,” adding that this inventory shortage of creates a challenge for first-time home buyers. “Homes were selling in a median of three weeks and multiple offers were a common occurrence, further pushing up home prices.”

Another challenge for many buyers is significant student loan debt. Thirteen percent of buyers said they’re having difficulty saving for a down payment, with half of those respondents stating student loans as the primary reason. First-time homebuyers are specifically struggling with this issue, as 40 percent have some student loan debt with median debt totaling $30,000. Student loans hit both younger homebuyers and singles harder. Younger buyers are either freshly out of school or struggling to prioritize student loans with saving for a down payment. Single people don’t have the support that married couples have as they’re working to pay off their student loans.

Trending Upside

Overall, the outlook is trending positive, according to Yun: “Existing home sales data shows inventory has been rising slowly on a year-over-year basis in recent months, which may encourage more would-be buyers who were previously convinced they could not find a home to enter the market.”

Such improvements may even be showing up in the numbers already. The 2018 NAR report found buyers put a median 13 percent down on their home purchases, up from 10 percent last year and the highest amount since 2005.

Knowing the relationship and financial status of your buyer is key in setting up the home search process for them. To learn more about how to appropriately and efficiently represent your buyers, start your seven-day free trial of AgentEDU and gain access to the “Representing Buyers” course.

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AgentEDU® is a platform where agents at every level can come to watch 10-minute video courses for the many situations that successful agents must master. From essential to advanced level and everything in between, AgentEDU® courses help agents become top producers with increased earnings and a plan for continued growth. For a 7-day free trial sign up here.

AgentEDU® is an Agent Publishing brand. For nearly two decades, Agent Publishing has been committed to providing residential real estate professionals with the information and training required to build successful and meaningful careers in their local markets. Agent Publishing’s influence extends to every career stage and reaches agents across print, digital, events and online learning.

4 Ways to Attract Luxury Open House Attendees

Selling a truly unique luxury property is different from your typical sale. It requires a more focused approach and a more sophisticated touch. Clients whose homes are worth many millions expect that special measures will be taken to market their property.

Sometimes agents will need to take extraordinary measures. When there is competition in the luxury market, there is an increase in high-end open houses — elegant and expensive events that spare no expense in showing a listing’s best qualities. This is not a typical open house.In this blog you’ll learn some of the ways that you can host a unique event to showcase a special property.

Traditional Advertising

In many cases, traditional media is still very effective for the real estate business.  Agents may be getting great results from direct mail postcards and advertising in print and online. Using postcards to let neighbors know what you have just listed or just sold works because it offers market information, plus exposure for listings and for yourself. Make sure the photos look great, the message and the call to action is clear and that the brand is properly reflected.

Advertising in print is effective in certain markets, though not in others. Online advertising allows potential clients to click through the ad to your website or email. And don’t forget to look into marketing opportunities on syndication sites like Zillow. These can help with lead generation as well. Ultimately, advertising works best when you know who your target market is and how to best reach them.

Social Media

With social media’s important role in marketing, most real estate agents maintain at least one social media account for their business. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and Snapchat are among the most popular, but additional networks may emerge, and you’ll need to be ready. The idea is to keep your company relevant and useful. If you can find a specific angle that can bolster your brand, all the better.

Create an editorial calendar that runs at least three months out so that you can map out a strategy and use any analytics that are available to optimize and refine your message. Social media holds a varying level of importance, depending on your target market, but no agent can afford to neglect it entirely.

Surveys, Testimonials and Reviews

A completed transaction is not the end of the relationship. There is still marketing work to do! Start with surveys, testimonials and reviews. It’s a good idea to send a survey to clients after a transaction is finished to let them share the pros and cons of their experience with you. This information can help you make improvements to systems and services.

It’s also a low-pressure tactic to ask for a testimonial and an online review. There are third-party survey services that are simple and inexpensive to put into practice. This should be part of your operating procedure at the close of every sale. And getting testimonials and reviews on sites like Yelp can really help you expose your brand to new clients and stand out from the competition.

Participate in the Neighborhood

Lastly, one of the best ways to market your business is by simply being top-of-mind when it comes to real estate in your neighborhood. The simplest and most effective way to do this is by actually spending time participating in local events. Have a presence at festivals and town meetings. Consider volunteering at the local school.

Suggest that your brokerage sponsor neighborhood events, or simply make sure to get a table at them. You may want to keep track of event opportunities and attend yourself. Seek out opportunities to put yourself in front of the right target market.

No one likes someone who only talks business, but there’s nothing wrong with being helpful and relevant. If you keep your ears open and participate with people, you will find organic ways to help market a company that truly is a part of the neighborhood.

All in all, it’s important to remember that selling homes is just one part of your business. It’s just as imperative to ensure that your business has a future flow of potential customers and that your brand and reputation is being managed in the best way for you and your business.

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AgentEDU® is a platform where agents at every level can come to watch 10-minute video courses for the many situations that successful agents must master. From essential to advanced level and everything in between, AgentEDU® courses help agents become top producers with increased earnings and a plan for continued growth. For a 7-day free trial sign up here.

AgentEDU® is an Agent Publishing brand. For nearly two decades, Agent Publishing has been committed to providing residential real estate professionals with the information and training required to build successful and meaningful careers in their local markets. Agent Publishing’s influence extends to every career stage and reaches agents across print, digital, events and online learning.