How To Win The Home Buying Business Of Millennials
How can today’s real estate professionals win the home buying business of millennials?
Analysts have pegged millennials as the largest group of home buyers emerging in the U.S. real estate market. With that in mind, only one question remains to be answered: how can real estate investors effectively connect with millennial homebuyers and earn their business?
While mobile technology will continue to play a large role in attracting millennials, it is just one tool in an entire arsenal that can help investors position themselves in front of this population. So what should real estate professionals and companies be focusing on? What will help them with the business of millennials now, and in the future?
Realtors, investors, and other industry professionals are frequently programmed to dismiss anyone that isn’t qualified and ready to buy within the next 30 days. While there is a lot to be said for time management, such a short focus could potentially limit your own success. If you are only working for the next 30 days, and kick to the curb anything important for your success over the next 90 days, 9 months, or 9 years, you are effectively sabotaging your career. By ignoring those that aren’t buying today, you’ll always be scrambling for business, paying more for leads, working harder, and netting less in the future. Almost ironically; the easiest leads to gain are those that will be buying tomorrow, and the day after, and the day after that. That’s because they are being ignored and dismissed by everyone else with the ‘30 day mentality.’ Maybe they don’t have all their ducks in a row yet. Perhaps their credit score isn’t quite where they want it to be, or they need to save a little more for a down payment. Yet, in 12 months from now, they might be one of the best qualified buyers on the market. Who are they going to turn to for help? Your job is to make sure the answer is you. Engage them now.
It is not enough to just have a conversation with these millennials now and hope they come to you when they are ready. Nurture these leads. Stay in touch, and stay at the top their mind. Don’t spam or hard sell when you know they aren’t ready. But you can stay in touch in a warm way. You can update them on the market, new home loans, your contact information, and even just to say “Hi.” Text messages, email, mail, social media, and even picking up the phone are all great ways to reach millennials.
Don’t just settle for keeping in touch or having friendly conversations. What many millennials really need is a real estate partner that will help them navigate unfamiliar territory. Younget populations usually don’t know everything there is to know about buying a home. Real estate professionals should look at how they can help educate, prepare, and even help millennial home buyers create a plan for home ownership and investing in real estate. This might sound like a lot of work to some, but there is much that can be done to simplify, streamline, systemize, and outsource everything that needs to be done. Strategic referral partners can help with this for free, and may even pick up additional marketing costs, or contribute financially (where legal). This will help them become buyers faster, become easier buyers to work with, and help them to enjoy lifelong success in property ownership.
Obviously, millennial home buyers do have slightly different preferences than some other generations. Their home buying criteria may not be that different than previous generations at that age, despite the proclamations of some pundits in the news. Today real estate experts and brands might need to connect across more mediums, faster, and make it easier to search for homes, get information, and buy homes. However, behind the technology, it is really all common sense. It boils down to building relationships and delivering a superior experience.
For some this may be real estate tours. For others: augmented reality layered into print advertising, or live virtual tours. Find a way that works for you. Just be sure to cater to the millennial population. Your business will thank you for it in the future.