Millennials are a coveted group in many industries, and real estate is no exception. Agents have been struggling to get Millennials through the doors for years, and many feel as though this demographic is one that needs to be skipped. However, I see the value in Millennial homebuyers, and I also know that appealing to them is much different than appealing to older generations. Today, we’ll look at some ways to draw in the largest generation.
Money is a big issue for Millennials. It has been reported that the biggest concern of Millennials when buying a home is saving enough for a down payment. While this is an unavoidable truth, I believe it is the job of realtors to show younger homebuyers ways they can buy a house without 20% down. Many programs go underutilized and some Millennials do not understand how an FHA loan works. Realtors should consider hosting a class on ways to buy a house with less. I am sure that Millennials would be interested to find out.
On the other side of cost is knowing how much one is able to afford. Millennials are often renters, so talking monthly price may be easier for them to compare. I think Trulia’s price calculator is a good way of running the numbers, as it includes homeowners insurance, PMI, and escrow. If you have Millennial clients, I suggest showing them what the monthly price could be, rather than emphasizing the significantly larger listing price. You should also explain that all utilities are in their hands, so the monthly mortgage payment may be even half of what they would end up paying.
While it is important to stage appropriately, it is even more important to take high-quality photos. Sellers and listing agents should hire a professional photographer to take pictures with good lighting that shows off the space. Another often overlooked media tool is a video tour, which I suggest for any seller. Showing each room in full will give potential buyers a better understanding of how much room there is before they schedule a tour.
The Right Listings
Listing homes in newspaper ads is now an outdated practice. In fact, “for sale” signs on the front lawn are not nearly as effective as listing online. The most popular real estate site, Zillow, has more than 44 million views in January 2013. This does not even account for mobile or app visits. Millennials are the Internet generation, and they will certainly find their dream home online. If you do not utilize Zillow, Trulia, and other top sites with every listing, you definitely need to start.
Appealing to Millennials is less about crazy gadgets or avocado toast and more about giving them the info they need right now. Rather than go through a long process to see how much they will pay for their mortgage, they will go to Trulia. They will find their listings on Zillow and will favorite it if the pictures look good. To get Millennials through your doors, don’t be gimmicky. Give them what they want and do it as quickly as possible.