Then & Now: How Real Estate Has Changed in 35 Years

Then & Now: How Real Estate Has Changed in 35 Years

Those in the industry know that real estate is constantly evolving, and thus real estate professionals must alter their methods along with it. Considering this fact, it should serve as no surprise that the industry was extremely different in 1981, when the National Association of Realtors released its first Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers survey. To illustrate the progression seen over those 35 years, the association shared with HousingWire the most notable changes since the first survey.

Here are a few that stood out to our South Florida real estate professionals at Stein Posner.

The internet is a Tool, Not a Replacement for Professionals

It makes sense that one of the most noteworthy trends to arise over the past 35 years was the introduction of the internet into the home search. When the internet first made its mark in the real estate process in 1995, just 2 percent of buyers were utilizing it in their search. Today, 90 percent of those looking for a new home turn to the internet for assistance. In spite of nearly all buyers using the internet as a tool for researching prospective properties, real estate professionals remain a very important component of the buying and selling process. It seems that sellers understand the significance of having an expert to rely upon when listing a home, as the number of homes marked for sale by owner has not exceeded 9 percent in five years.

People Take Longer to Purchase a Home Today

From the survey’s inception through 2007, buyers would take seven to eight weeks on average to purchase a home. That timeline has grown more lengthy in recent years, partly due to insufficient inventory. In the past two years, the average buyer has taken 10 weeks to find a home. According to the NAR, this trend is likely to continue until new inventory becomes available.

First-Time Buyers Have Declined

There are fewer first-time home buyers entering the market than in past years, and the suspected reasons as to why vary. Realistically, this shift can be linked to any number of contributing factors, such as the rise in student debt and struggles over affordability. Today, first-time buyers make up just 32 percent of those currently searching for a home, a steep decline when compared to 2010’s peak of 50 percent. The NAR suggests that this number will see a gradual increase in the coming years, with more millennials seeking out homeownership.

If you have questions about today’s South Florida real estate market, our team of experts is just a call away. Contact our office to get invaluable local insight and the help you need to achieve your real estate goals.

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