Is It Time To Get Back Into Real Estate?
Is it time for you to get back into real estate?
A recent feature by Inman News highlighted a surge in new real estate websites and a significant influx of new real estate agents. The motivation for new entries to real estate sales, investment, and finance world is obvious. But what about the veterans that have been on vacation, honing their skills in different industries and mediums since the bust? Are they preparing to make a massive comeback? Should they? What’s the best way for them to return to the real estate industry, and how will it impact the newbies?
Real Estate’s New Generation
Many new real estate agents, investors, and mortgage bankers have stampeded into the U.S. property industry in the last six years. From browsing the web, it would appear 2008 is a vintage year for an ‘experienced’ vet. Of course, this is because so many fled the business when the housing and mortgage market went bust, beginning in 2005.
Many real estate agents were starved out of business, even those previously selling billions of dollars a year in real estate. Mortgage lenders and banks simply went bankrupt and imploded. Investors saw their holdings evaporate. Much of this could have been avoided with better real estate education and knowledge of predictable housing cycles, as well as adherence to sound investment, business and personal finance principals. Still, many were burned, and headed off to new careers.
The new generation of real estate ‘pros’ is made up of those that saw their previous fields squashed by the fallout of the same crisis and needed an alternative, those that have just been introduced to the benefits and power of real estate investing, and the opportunity seekers looking to take advantage of the deeply depressed market, and deep discounts on housing. For the new generation, real estate only makes sense. For the most part, it is the only thing working, and that can give them hope.
Off the Fence
Even though most of the old crowd now recognize the mistakes, and have watched the market rebound healthily and predictably, many thousands have remained on the fence. Some are paranoid about the witch hunts by regulators which can great huge hassles at the merest smell of something which isn’t 100% understood. Others aren’t sure if they really want to deal with the craziness, stress, and absurd personalities. Some have found peace living on less and working on more fulfilling projects.
However, for 99% there is nothing like the thrill of real estate, and for 99.9999% nothing that can come close when it comes to income, wealth, and simply putting bread on the table. Even for those that have gotten over their own egos, and have re-aligned themselves with more charitable goals, real estate still stands out head and shoulders above everything else as a tool for achieving philanthropic goals and funding other pursuits.
The Need for Experienced Real Estate Pros to Return to the Market
A few have realized that there is a desperate need for experienced pros to come back. Home sellers, buyers and renters still largely remain very poorly served. They need professionals that really care about them. Newcomers need leadership, and direction which will set good, ethical examples, based upon sound and sustainable principles. And the market needs them to grow, grow sustainably, and avoid tangents that will only encourage more regulation which will hurt both professionals and consumers.
How to Make a Comeback
Despite the appeal, and need to come back into real estate, it can be daunting. It means a lot of hustle, getting to know markets intimately. A need to learn all of the new laws and common practices. New technology, and for some, the use of technology period. And the obvious warm up period.
Fortunately it doesn’t all have to be done overnight. You’ve waited this long right. So start sowing the seeds, getting the word out, networking, developing a contact base, developing a mastermind group, and creating marketing materials. For most, some informal in person networking a good real estate blog, and social media presence could do wonders for rolling back in with a strong hand.
What it Means for the Newer Players
This could be seriously disruptive for newer real estate players. Overnight, they may go from being the most established, savvy, and connected investors or Realtors in their market, and the information sources in their local areas and niches to being the new kids on the block.
Once the vets get warmed up and rekindle old connections, they could be viewed as serious competition. And competition which has a lot more industry experience. Learn from them, leverage them, and they can add a lot of value back.