Real estate is in the midst of a major digital transformation. There is growing consumer demand for fully digital experiences that have been building for years, and it has evolved in nearly every aspect of life.
Buying or selling a home should not be any different. Yet, for decades it has been. The traditional experience of buying and selling a home is based on antiquated processes that are timeconsuming, complex, and uncertain for consumers. Thankfully, that is beginning to change. With higher interest rates, inflation, and economic uncertainty, the market is moving differently than it was just a few short months ago. Many sellers have grown used to the idea of a quick sale and getting everything they want. Buyers were accustomed to low-interest rates that enabled them to afford higher-priced homes.
There are more digital options than ever for home buyers and sellers throughout their journey from near-instant mortgage pre-approval done through an app, to iBuyers that will buy a seller's home for cash, to programs that back a buyers offer with a company’s cash. What do all of these products and services have in common? They are not only online experiences that are faster and more convenient, but they also provide more control and certainty for the customer.
A fully digital and online experience for buying and selling a home is closer than ever before, and it will transform real estate for generations to come
In an uncertain market, consumers want more assurance. A survey we conducted found 71-percent of sellers say they'd sell their home to a digital real estate company, and 75-percent of home buyers say they would want to buy a home using digital tools. How can agents capitalize on these shifts in the market?
It is important to remember that homebuyers and sellers value the personal relationships they have with their real estate agents. Agents understand their client's unique needs, and they have a deep understanding of the nuances in a neighborhood or city that can greatly benefit the buyer or seller. Even more importantly, an agent is seen as a trusted advisor.
Here are three ways agents can help unlock the fully digital future of the real estate.
Give your clients more visibility and transparency into their home value. Present them with an offer from an iBuyer, alongside your expertise on neighborhood comps and the home's projected value. An iBuyer provides a cash offer that enables customers to sell their homes without obstacles and objections they have historically faced. And anything an agent can do to bring sellers more offers is a win-win for everyone.
Advise your client on all the tools in their tool kit, whether they are buying or selling. For example, if you have a buyer who is competing against multiple bids, show them the option to work with a tech company that can back the offer with their cash to help the buyer get a competitive edge.
Counsel them on their best option, whether they need to sell and move quickly or want to list their home on the market. We hear from customers time and again that they trust their agents to put all options on the table, and share their expertise to help them weigh the potential outcomes. While selling a home on the open market may yield a higher sale price, sometimes the convenience, simplicity, and certainty of a cash offer provides may better suit a seller’s specific needs.
Agents should embrace a digital-first mentality because, ultimately, it is the future of the real estate. A fully digital and online experience for buying and selling a home is closer than ever before, and it will transform real estate for generations to come.
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