select
|

Homebuyers are online

The internet and retail websites have become a fundamental part of many savvy consumers’ lives in today’s market. A large number of consumers prefer to shop and purchase merchandise online due to its convenience.  Although the retail industry is currently the online leader in terms of volume and the number of consumers, the real estate industry is making significant ground and catching up quickly.

Adrian Goslett, CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa, says that in the past, few would have believed that the internet would be the first place potential buyers would look to find their dream home and yet, today more than 90% of all consumers use property search portals as the first step towards homeownership. Consumers have confidence in the internet and the information found at their fingertips. “Homebuyers appreciate how simply online resources have made the process of finding their perfect property and many of the best leads in real estate have been generated through online search portals. The majority of consumers have turned to the internet as their main means of researching for their future property,” he says.

So what impact does this have on the real estate industry and the traditional marketing methods?  It simply means that the conventional sources of real estate information are no longer as important to homebuyers. Before the introduction of property search portals, homebuyers would scrutinize newspapers and real estate property magazines to find property. Today the number of prospective homebuyers in the US who still consult newspaper ads and magazines has fallen to approximately 9% and 6% respectively, and SA has seen a similar trend. Goslett says that although there has been a shift in the industry, traditional marketing tools are by no means dead, they have merely adapted. He says that although consumer online searches have boosted the options for potential buyers and eliminated their sole reliance on older methods of research, they still have their place in the market.

“Although homebuyers are looking for information regarding property and searching for homes online, they will still consult with a real estate agent to supplement and refine their search. The prospect of buying property online has increased; however, estate agents are still very much an essential part of the process. Online real estate search tools have not taken business away from agents, but has instead offered them another perform in which to better their service to their clients,” says Goslett.

He notes that due to the vast growth and prospective opportunities presented by online real estate portals, most estate agents, if not all, have responded well to the consumer change in behavior and have become involved in increasing their online presence. “Real estate agencies have spent time on developing their web technologies to accommodate their clients and the majority of real estate agents have invested in tools such as Smartphones and iPads in order to stay in touch and connected with their growing online network,” says Goslett.

According to www.remax.co.za, the top ten suburbs based on the highest number of area searches over the last three months are as follows:
Suburbs
1.    Port Elizabeth - Eastern Cape9,177
2.    Pretoria East - Gauteng4,587
3.    Cape Town – Western Cape3,747
4.    Bloemfontein – Free State3,062
5.    Centurion - Gauteng2,987
6.    Gaborone - Botswana2,679
7.    Rustenburg - Gauteng2,465
8.    Witbank - Mpumalanga2,410
9.    Johannesburg - Gauteng2,325
10.   Bryanston, Sandton - Gauteng2,300


Real estate companies that do not have an online strategy will be left behind due to the incredible speed at which technology changes and develops. “The internet is a remarkable tool that has made the world a significantly smaller place. It is incredible to be a part of this era and be at the technological forefront of the modern day real estate industry,” Goslett concludes.


  Comment on this Article

  Please login to post comments

Post to my facebook wall
  
2000
Characters remaining


    Latest Property News
    • 22 Jun 2018
      The rental market in many Johannesburg suburbs has shown encouraging signs of revival this year but it remains a competitive market and landlords who best cater to their market’s needs will reap the healthiest returns.
    • 22 Jun 2018
      Home design is constantly evolving to reflect the changing needs of society. We look at some of the ways in which our use of space is changing.
    • 22 Jun 2018
      While estate agents can help the seller with correctly pricing the property and marketing a property to the right pool of potential buyers, at the end of the day it’s the impression that the property will make on buyers that counts the most.
    • 21 Jun 2018
      Anyone who’s ever been involved in a building project that’s gone wrong will appreciate the importance of adequate insurance cover in the construction industry.
    • 21 Jun 2018
      A recent news story about a blind tenant caught in a legal battle with his body corporate over letters and notices he was unable to read and consequently comply with has raised the question: what are the legal obligations for landlords with disabled tenants?
    • 21 Jun 2018
      A trend that’s taken the world by storm in recent years is that of hygge (pronounced: hue-guh), a Danish concept that is about creating intimacy, connecting with loved ones and taking pleasure in small, ordinary things.
    • 20 Jun 2018
      Buying or selling real estate isn’t as easy as it is portrayed sometimes, especially if there is a death of a party during the transaction which can make it awkward, tricky and inconvenient.
    • 20 Jun 2018
      With interest rates remaining at historic lows and banks continuing to compete for mortgage finance business, first-time buyers with funds at their disposal are currently well-placed to gain that initial foothold on the property ladder, particularly in the light of the slightly lower growth rates currently experienced in residential property values.
        
    X
    Subscribe to the MyProperty Newsletter

    Name  
    Last Name  
    Email Address  
    Email Frequency
    select
    X
    Share this Page

       
    For Sale Property
    Rental Property
    More Options
    About
    Connect with us
    FEEDBACK