Millennials and real estate

25.08.2014

Millennials and real estate
Have you ever heard of the Millennial generation? Who are the Millennials and how do they behave? Travis Robertson, an international speaker and real estate coach, helps us understand this generation of buyers and their impact on our industry. To begin with, know that this generation includes anyone born between 1977 and 1995 (people born between 1965 and 1976 are considered to be part of Generation Y).
According to Robertson, Millennials are involved in 35% of today's residential real estate transactions. Their priority: a better work-life balance. To avoid certain constraints and an excessively cumbersome financial burden, they prefer smaller houses and plots of land, as size is no longer necessarily an exterior sign of wealth. Furthermore, they only purchase after having visited several properties. They take the time to analyse and compare areas and the characteristics of properties. It is also interesting to note that they are attracted to built-up areas. They appreciate not only the city but also urban centres with full amenities located in suburban zones. This is not just a matter of choice, but also a question of means, as housing prices in many city centres are prohibitive. For many Millennials, "walkability" is also a deciding factor. They prefer to walk or bike to their workplaces. This is part and parcel of their quest for a healthier lifestyle. Millennials make their final property selection from a short list of four properties on average. They choose with the help of their friends and/or family, who now play a key role in the decision to purchase a property. Five interesting statistics to note:

67% of buyers wish to live near their friends
65% of buyers wish to live near their close family
57% of Millennials are conscientious or very conscientious of energy conservation (an important theme for this generation)
Average age of first-time buyers = 31 years
Average age of sellers = 57 years

These last two statistics have a direct impact on your work. Indeed, these two generations do not communicate in the same way and it is your job to act as intermediary. It is up to you to use the means of communication best suited to each generation and to adapt to those used by Millennials. Robertson recommends asking clients how they would like to communicate (social networks, SMS and so forth). If you think this approach is not right for you, you should at least know that 73% of vendors using social networks sell more than those who do not. Undoubtedly, one reason is that this generation is accustomed to having access to information: they need it. They want to discover your company, services and reputation, and understand the market. Allowing them to do so is essential in gaining their trust. Robertson underlines this with the following example: let's say you participate in an event where you meet a person seeking accommodation in the city where he has just arrived following the relocation of his company. What happens after your encounter? You can bet that this person will search the Internet to see what he can find on you and your company. According to Robertson, when a Millennial contacts you, he has already researched you and your services and has made an informed decision to work with you. And keep in mind that recommendations also play a key role in the choice of agent. So remember to make your marketing informative!

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