Real estate agents must prepare for newcomers in the housing market: Generation Z. More commonly known as “Gen Z,” this is the generation coming after millennials (those born between 1981 and 1996), comprising everyone born from 1997 to around 2012.
While the oldest members of Gen Z are only about to enter their mid-20s, they are already at an age at which they must consider the possibility of homeownership. Those in their 20s will soon look into the mortgages with the best rates and the right agent to partner with them through the home buying process.
Real estate agents must start early in studying this emerging market to understand the correct methods to use to effectively sell houses to them.
What Makes Gen Z Different
You must first have a grasp of what sets this generation of home buyers apart from others. These two questions will help you.
- How do they make purchase decisions?
The cautious purchasing habits of Gen Z are a response to the experiences of the generations before them. Millennials in particular have had a troubled relationship with real estate, being a generation that purchased significantly fewer homes compared to Gen X and Boomers. With home prices and student debt rising, millennials have struggled to save money to pay down payments and mortgages.
Gen Z is more careful about their financial choices due to the struggles experienced by millennials. They want to be well-educated in financial management to avoid falling into debt that they may be unable to get out of.
Those in Gen Z are also used to accessing the information on the Internet, so expect that they have done prior research before making big financial decisions.
- What do they value?
Gen Z grew up with more advanced technology and internet access than previous generations. They do not just want but expect to have this convenience in whatever home they move into. They will look for homes that have amenities to support their tech-savvy lifestyle and allow them to experiment with home customization tips they find online.
Since members of Gen Z are the most racially diverse in U.S. history and the most familiar with self-educating through the Internet, they are also more socially conscious than other generations. They pay attention to ethical practices, workplace equality, and the overall social consciousness of the businesses they interact with.
Real estate agents, then, face the challenge of marketing homes that give them a feeling of independence and convenience and also help them uphold their worldviews and principles.
How to Market Real Estate to Gen Z
Gen Z is an evolving market, as many members are still entering the workforce. Still, there are three important factors that will help real estate agents establish connections with this young generation.
- Be digitally literate
Firstly, digital presence is a requirement. Gen Z does not know a world without the Internet, so it is the first place they will look to find leads for agents and houses.
What have your clients said about you or the homes you are selling? Make sure these reviews are readily available for them to check. Information about the homes you sell and the neighborhoods they are in should also be online so that they can make immediate decisions.
Also, do not rely solely on home pictures and descriptions to capture interest. Note that the average Gen Z attention span is only eight seconds, so you must have the resources to capture them immediately when they visit your web pages. Have professionally shot videos and give access to virtual house tours to sustain interest in the homes on your portfolio.
- Be easy to contact
You must also be easily accessible. First, make sure that your contact details (both mobile and email) and work hours are easy to find on both your website and social media pages.
In addition to this, a mobile-friendly website or even better, a mobile app is an expectation. The typical Gen Z individual accesses the Internet primarily through their mobile phone, so you must configure your pages so that they can send inquiries or schedule meetings from their smartphones. Take steps to make online browsing as convenient for them as possible.
- Be socially aware and responsible
Finally, members of Gen Z care about what businesses stand for. They will look into the principles of your agency and what kind of causes you support if any.
Make sure that you clearly communicate the advocacies you take part in, the charities you donate to, and the ethical practices of your organization. This makes it much easier for Gen Z buyers to decide to find homes with the help of your agency.