Change is constant, but it is never more evident than when looking at what consumers expect from their service providers. The other apparent constant is the slow response of suppliers to their consumer.
Real estate is no exception. Today’s consumer expects to have access to all the information they want regarding a property, whether it be the current price if it’s on the market, or the sale price of a home they were interested in, or assessment, or taxes, or… the list goes on. It seems that the keepers of the information, even if they wanted to share the information are restricted from doing so either by government laws, or by rules within their industry. Also, quite often, the keepers of the information are leery of sharing, in case they lose control, which I believe has been a problem in the real estate industry until just recently, when REALTORS® and their associations decided to make access easier for the consumer. I am sure the consumer still believes we could and should still provide more information (remember my first paragraph).
Another area where change has been slow is delivery of the information. It wasn’t that long ago that we actually were unable to provide a computer print out of information, in fact using printed material that was out of date before it even got into the REALTORS’® hands much less out to the consumer. Now that the internet has made the transfer of information so much easier and quicker, many are still slow to provide the immediate response that consumers are looking for.
Moving on from providing information, the consumer is looking for a number of other services, such as
All but instant response to texts, email and telephone calls. Many REALTORS® are slow to respond, with many not answering emails at all.
Listings that have plenty of photos and video tours so they can get a feel for the property prior to viewing it
REALTORS® that have websites, both to provide information about the REALTOR® themselves and also to promote the consumers listings or provide them with listing information
One stop shopping. Consumers expect their REALTOR® to provide access to financing, home inspection, insurance, staging and more.
REALTORS® who know their job! Keep up to date and provide informed service. Consumers do not want surprises because their REALTOR® just didn’t know to ask the right questions.
These are just a few of the changes in what consumers are looking for, and as a REALTOR® I know we all need to keep up to date and acquire the skills necessary to provide what our consumers want.