By Kevin Shepherd
The feared millennial. We are attached to our phones, we want what we want and we won’t stop until we get it. Millennial’s were born between 1981 and 1997; our generation is now 66 million individuals strong and increasingly out numbering the Baby Boomers day by day. So what is it about today’s 35 to 19 year olds that are changing the Real Estate game so much?
Let’s begin with our ever increasing attachment to technology; it’s not only on our desks, but in our hands and now even on our wrists. I can go for a run, leave my phone at home and still know if you emailed me from the buzz of my watch. Seems a little much for many Gen Xers and older but what about for the Real Estate Agent? What happens when you realize they missed a signature in a contract that you need to submit ASAP? Do you have to track them down, call their house or work phone, wait until they can get to a computer or can you send them a link on their phone or even have them open their Dotloop app and fill out exactly what you need in a matter of moments. Even before you reach this point I believe your millennial clientele will be significantly easier to work with due to their love affair with technology and their ability to learn anything from the touch of their screens.
Research is the millennial’s middle name; nearly all of us have grown up with the ability to find any information at the touch of our fingers. I wouldn’t say we claim expertise just from a quick google search but if we have a question we will find an answer. So again, how does this help the real estate agent? Imagine your first meeting with a client, after some of the formalities you ask, “so what are we looking for” and they start with well……. And really have no idea, or start with the millennial, which has been all over Zillow, Trulia, Hot Pads, Craig’s List and more. We’ve seen what we like and don’t like, we know what area were looking for, what’s close, what’s not and more. Imagine a knowledgeable client; life sounds great now doesn’t it? We might not know the ins and outs of Real Estate but were ready to learn and listen and we know what questions we have because well, there was an answer blog post titled “What to ask when you’re buying your first home”.
Now what about the millennial makes us so prone to research? Why aren’t we afraid to look up anything and everything? Well if you asked me, being the most highly educated generation in the world will do that to you. We are quickly, as we become of age, receiving more degrees than the current leaders, Gen X. 19% of millennials have a college degree, 40% are still in school, and 90% of those graduating high school have a plan to go to college. As a Real Estate agent you’re looking at the piles of loans our generation has, and trust me we are too, but that’s exactly my point. The millennial knows what our wallet looks like, inside and out. We have a solid plan for the future and are prepared to work a mortgage or whatever other payments into our budget. With the internet in our pockets we have apps to keep us on track, and an extensive amount of information to give us a heads up about what home owner life looks like. We are ready.
This brings me to our final point. Millennials were born before and still remember September 11th, the crash of the economy and house market, and more school shootings than many of us can name, but what good can come of that? Researchers are still perplexed with why but even after all of this the millennial generation has also been called the Boom a Rang generation. No matter the setback, the tragedy or the failure, we always come back stronger and more resilient than ever. The Millennial will not and cannot give up; it isn’t what we’ve been taught our whole life. Although I find it a bit sad, we were told that you do not stop until you are the best. And in the real estate world this enthusiasm and inability to give up makes us a great client. Maybe we don’t get the first house but you can’t knock us down, we will keep trying, well research more, adjust our budget and work our hardest until we’ve reached the top of the food chain.