NAR Research disclosed the new REALTOR® demographics today in an article printed in their newsletter Real Estate Insights.
This is an important strategic benchmark for service providers to the real estate industry to remember – impacting marketing communications, product usability, and support expectations. Here is a summary.
60% of REALTORS® are female – and this trend is predominant in every age group from the youngest to the oldest.
A larger share of Broker/Owners are Male and more than 40% are 60 or older.
The median age of REALTORs® is 52. This number has not changed very dramatically over the last 5 member surveys. When you look out at the edges, you find that 28% of REALTORS® are over 60 while only 11% are under 34.
Age vs. Experience – the median age of those with fewer than two years of experience in real estate is 43. REALTORS® with more than 16 years of experience report a median age of 60.
Education – 35% of REALTORS® have some college education, with 25% completing a Bachelor’s degree.
81% of REALTORS® responded that they were Full-Time agents in 2005, a number that has slipped significantly to 77% in 2008. 87% of REALTORS® with more than 16 years experience reported that they work Full Time compared to 59% of REALTORS with less than two years experience.
92% of REALTORS® own a home.
When real estate technology vendors are developing products for real estate professionals they need to consider the demographics mentioned above. Remember that type fonts may need to be larger than average and that while it is politically incorrect to say so, women do use technology differently. They like to get right to the point. They are busy people who have little patience for usability that is not completely intuitive. Generally, they do not like to be “early adopters”. They do not like to help technology vendors perfect their offering. They want it to be rock solid out of the gate.
Top Producer Profile
Someone born in 1948, being 60 years of age this year, 2008, is part of the baby boomer generation. Economically, they face the challenges of elderly parents living longer than ever, and increasing demands to pay for their children’s college, they have become “sandwiched” between generations. Baby boomers from a consumer point of view enjoy good customer service. Most accounts do consider them Internet-savvy, although no mention of how savvy.
Someone born in 1973, being 35 years of age this year, 2008, is part of the Generation X. Generation X is categorized by: disaffection with governance, political apathy, increased divorce, the inception of the internet, increased educational variance, and a decrease in education funding and loan availability. A large study titled Economic Mobility: Is the American Dream Alive and Well?, showed that the younger earns 12% less in real terms, than their fathers at the same age in 1974. Generation X is responsible for 31% of overall internet usage. This person is not afraid of technology and some carry less respect for organizations with sub-par technology.
Graph overlaying REALTORS with Home Buyers