Real Estate is not just about the numbers, real estate is personal.
I had the opportunity to attend the California Association of Realtors Expo in San Diego this week. Thousands of realtors, real estate professionals and hundreds of exhibitors from all over California gathered under one roof to meet, learn, network, share and collaborate. I could feel the positive energy and vibes in the air. Everyone was upbeat and excited about being in the real estate industry. How different from 10 years ago.
The market has exceeded the highs from a decade ago and projections show a continued upper trend. Although interest rate increases are looming on the horizon and there is uncertainty about tax reform, home sales and price projections continue to be up. Lack of inventory (low supply of homes) and an increasing population in California (increased demand for housing) will continue to be the driving force for increased home prices. Examples of median home price increases from a decade ago to today include: In San Francisco, from $972k to $1,380M; in San Mateo $1,020M to $1,337M; and in Santa Clara from $865k to $1,150M. Santa Clara was noted specifically as being among the top cities for a high increase in home prices. The job market is also a driving force in the demand for housing, with a continued strong job market in the Bay Area.
But even though employment rates are a strong driver in the increase in home purchases, affordability was a big topic, as many people in the Bay Area will not be able to afford to live here. To purchase a million dollar home, most would need two high incomes to make the mortgage payments.
First time home-buying programs featuring low down payments are becoming increasingly popular for low to moderate income families, who do not necessarily need to be first time buyers. There are also programs for younger people with college debt who are just starting to establish themselves and want to buy a home.
While the above was being reported, we also heard about the social media trends and how to work with your clients using Facebook and other media channels. This includes not just having photos in one’s online profile but sharing videos to better inform and connect with your audience. Real estate is personal and one aspect is to make it personal via social media, but don’t forget to also continue to foster relationships outside the Internet. Many successes still result from a referral from a friend, family member or colleague. So building relationships is still key.
What I loved most about the event was the comradery and collaboration among professionals, and the seasoned realtors teaching and giving ideas/ tips to those newer to this industry, to help them along in their real estate journey.
If you did not make it to San Diego and you want to hear more information about real estate and learn valuable tips and insights, it’s not too late. You can attend the Santa Clara County Association of Realtors (SCCAOR) event this coming Thursday, October 19th at the Santa Clara Convention Center. I hope to see and connect with you there.