What 2014 Real Estate Statistics Mean For Investors

Do you know your real estate statistics?

Knowing the numbers puts a lot into perspective for home buyers, home sellers, real estate investors, new businesses, and even Realtors. So, what to the latest digits mean?

A new round of real estate statistics, compiled by Placester and Inman News, provide interesting insight into exactly where the U.S. housing market is in 2014, and what’s ahead:

10 Real Estate Stats to Know:

1.) 92% of Consumers went Online to Start Their Home Search

In the next couple of years, this number could presumably reach 100%. This means more competition for those advertising their homes for sale on the web, and a need to stay abreast of best online real estate marketing practices. However, it could also offer an opportunity to differentiate and stand out for those that keep offline marketing in their promotional mix.

2.) 60% of Online Home Search via Mobile Devices

On weekends in 2013, as many as 60% of online home searches were performed via mobile devices. This year is expected to be the tipping point when many more will go mobile. This suggests a need for home sellers to ensure their online home listings show up well on mobile devices, if they want to be seen. More importantly; it hints that home buyers are looking for information to act on while out on the search. This creates a need for better delivery and response to home details,

3.) There are More Than 133 Million Housing Units in the US

That’s a lot of houses. Real estate agents and investors in particular need to know how many, or few are in their local markets, and how much potential business volume is available. At least if they want to create accurate business and marketing plans.

4.) 13.5% of US Homes are Vacant

This equates to 18 million vacant homes in the US. This is even more than the total estimated number of single family homes that have been bought by investors and offered as rentals. This bucks some comments and fears that there is any shortage of deals or homes to buy in America. However, perhaps most shocking is that according to Wikipedia only around 3.5 million people experience homelessness in a given year. That essentially means that there is more than enough vacant housing to house every single homeless person in America, plus more than 10 million refugees or newcomers needing housing support.

5.) 5.09 Million Homes were sold in 2013

This is a strong figure. One estimate puts the number of advertised homes for sale at the beginning of 2014 at less than 2 million. This could constrain the total number of sales in 2014. However, as the market has risen in value many more homeowners are rising above being underwater. This is in addition to the many properties finally working their way through the foreclosure and court system, as well as fresh mortgage defaults, and new construction.

 6.) Home Construction to Rise 25% in 2014

Home builders have been ramping up new construction, and are re-starting work on many stalled projects. This will add inventory to keep fueling markets. According to the National Association of Realtors home building activity is still at a fraction of the pace of previous momentum. These properties will be heavily marketed, and may be attractive to many. However, due to costs, many will be marketed at significant premiums over existing, and even like new properties, or new properties which have never been lived in but have been sitting on the market for a while.

7.) 2 Million Employed in the Real Estate Industry

This statistic is likely very low, especially if real estate investors, builders, mortgage professionals and others are added to the growing count of real estate agents.

8.) Total Employment to Rise 10% by 2022

Total US employment is predicted to rise by around 10% in the next 8 years. Much of this will likely be real estate related. The chief economist of the National Association of Realtors recently commented that this pace is not keeping pace with population growth. This should be monitored by industry professionals and investors. Where the jobs are, the best housing growth will be.

9.) Real Estate Related Google Searches are Up 253%

Google searches for real estate related terms reportedly rose 253% from 2009 to 2013. That is a lot of online traffic for home sellers, real estate agents and investors to capitalize on. For home buyers it also means far more competing buyers likely looking at the same home listings. Those that find something they like would be wise to move quickly.

10.) Online Real Estate Marketing Spending is Set to Hit $16 Billion this Year

Over the last 4 years online real estate marketing spending has risen 201%. $16 billion is expected to be spent online alone in 2014, or 56% of the total anticipated spend. This requires online marketers to be smarter, and work more efficiently if they want to be seen amongst the competition. Just 25% is reportedly being spent on print, leaving significant opportunity in magazines and direct mail marketing for real estate.

What do you think about these real estate statistics? Have any of your own interesting stats to share? Let us know…