Over the past few years, millennials have emerged as one of the biggest influences on real estate trends. Recently surpassing baby boomers as the largest living generation, millennials have a significant amount of sway on the market and they are changing the way business is done. One of the biggest challenges in the industry now is how to market to this incredibly diverse generation. As it turns out, one of the best ways is to create a unique environment.
According to The Chicago Business Journal, real estate developers need to partner with the private sector to construct neighborhoods that are centered on the idea of community, focusing on the principles of accessibility, affordability, and aesthetics.
With more millennials preferring public transportation and ride sharing to owning a car, a neighborhood has to be accessible (and safe) for these methods of transportation. The more walkable (and bikeable) a city is, the more it will attract millennials.
As the most indebted generation, affordability is also a significant consideration for potential millennial homebuyers. As such, they often wait until much later in their life cycle to commit to a home. On the other hand, when they do decide to buy a home, they don’t want to start with a fixer-upper as the baby boomer generation did. First-time millennial buyers are looking for high-end features from the beginning and they are willing to wait to buy until they can afford the extra amenities they’re looking for. Because of this, many millennials will continue to rent until they can get what they want.
Technology is Changing How Younger Generations Search for Property
Perhaps one of the biggest changes millennials have influenced in the industry is the increased use of technology. Where at one time real estate agents would find houses that meet their client’s preferences and coordinate showings, tech-savvy millennials are doing most of the research themselves online – sometimes even before they have an agent. As a result, real estate companies and agents need to make sure they have a professional and thorough online presence, including social media. Companies and agents who don’t put resources into technology will find it more challenging to appeal to this generation. In addition, millennials are much more likely to conduct business over text or email, rather than in person or over the phone. Investing in tools to make this easier (like electronic contracts) will make them much more likely to choose your company over another.