By Dennis Walsh
I’m sure you don’t find these numbers surprising. In fact, in our extensive travels, we find most brokers and agents feel that a full 60-70 percent or more of home shoppers in their markets want to include new homes in their search. Yet, the same brokers and associates acknowledge that less than 5 percent of all real estate professionals have undergone the specialized training, gathered the market research, and established the builder relationships necessary to support the needs of this majority of buyers interested in new homes!
Armed with this knowledge, I can’t imagine any real estate professional not recognizing that it’s essential to be prepared to fully meet the needs of today’s homebuyers—or a broker consciously ignoring the needs of a majority of prospective customers. Not coincidentally, some of real estate’s most successful leaders do recognize the importance of new-homes expertise for real estate success:
“New-home business has always been important for resale—there’s clearly a relationship between the two. Our ability to help buyers across both areas attracts more buyers overall,” explains RE/MAX Chairman and Co-founder Dave Liniger. “Builders are beginning to prosper again, so agents absolutely need to make sure they are prepared and arm themselves with education in new-home sales. I’m very enthusiastic about new homes and urge everyone in real estate to prepare for the boom in new-home sales.”
Ron Peltier, chairman and CEO of HomeServices of America, talks about today’s new-homes opportunities in contrast to the recent REO market. “If a sales associate is not knowledgeable in the new-homes arena, they are going to miss out on an even greater opportunity. We all saw how REOs became a dominant part of the business for several years. What’s important to recognize is that new homes are a much bigger opportunity than this—even bigger than it was 10 years ago. There is tremendous pent-up demand, growing household formation and interest rates that still remain historically low. These factors should continue to play out for many years. Together, this adds up to a massive, long-term opportunity.”
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