Agents are wary, yet optimistic, that the market will be flat for the rest of 2023, according to agents surveyed in the third quarter RealTrends AgentPulse. However, they are intent on increasing their marketing and making adjustments to thrive.
According to the survey, agents are overwhelming spending more time talking to their sphere of influence and using social media to reach sellers, something they had been lax about during the market boom. According to an agent with Chicago, “I’m developing niche digital campaigns and focusing on sales of new development projects that are launching or are in need of refreshing.”
Another real estate and mortgage professional says they are, “Staying in constant connection with closed real estate and closed mortgage loan client and focusing on DRIP campaigns to my sphere of influence and business professionals such as financial planners, CPAs and attorneys to ask for referrals.”
About 36% of agents surveyed were optimistic about the housing market in the next six months – a slight decrease from the AgentPulse Q2 survey. Another 44% were neutral in their outlooks, down from 46% in the AgentPulse Q2 report. Some 19% were pessimistic, up from 16% last quarter.
When asked what their biggest challenges are, some 31% said interest rates and inflation was at the top of the list. Next was low inventory/getting listings (33%), housing affordability and mindset. Considering that in our 2022 Q3 BrokerPulse survey, brokers noted that 25% to 75% of their agents have never been through a downturn, it’s no surprise that agents mention mindset as a bigger challenge than finding leads, professionalism and institutional investors.
RealTrends AgentPulse requests quarterly surveys from some 19,000+ real estate agents around the nation on market trends, opportunities and challenges. Of the 342 completed surveys, 23% were from the Northeast, 19% were from the Southeast, 24% from the Southwest, 20% from the Midwest, and 14% from the Northwest.
In the survey, about 15% of agents think that home sales will be up 5% or more in the next three months – a big drop from the 49% in the Q2 survey. Another 46% said home sales will be flat. When it comes to home prices increase, 13% said they expected home prices to be up more than 5% – a significant decline from 32% in the Q2 report – while 39% expected an home price will be down 5% or more.
Price reductions on the rise
When asked about proven strategies for handling price reductions, agents aren’t waiting very long to recommend them. “If I don’t have any offers after 10 showings or 10 days on the market, I reduce the price,” said an agent with an independent brokerage in the Northeast. Another agent, who works with luxury buyers in the Northeast, said that they, “Re-evaluate our position in the market after the first two weeks a home in on the market.”
Others warned of using price reductions. “The vast majority of agents rely too heavily on price reductions, which only serves their own transactional sales approach. This strategy hurts sellers, market value and appraisals,” according to a broker in the midwest.
Brokerage technology adoption
When asked whether they use their brokerage’s tech platform, 90% of respondents said yes, but only certain parts of it. Most mentioned that they use the platform for marketing materials, such as property detail reports, market reports, listing presentations and digital signatures.
Of the ones who don’t use their brokerage’s technology, they commonly say that the platform is too time consuming or difficult to navigate or they prefer their own technology.
RealTrends AgentPulse is a forward-looking survey of real estate agents and team leaders.
If you have questions about AgentPulse or want to be added to the list, email RealTrends Editorial Director Tracey Velt at email@example.com.