REAL Trends, in collaboration with BoomTown, dotloop, and ERA Real Estate, in 2016 to conduct a terrific study of real estate teams. Called The Real Estate Teams Playbook, perhaps real estate’s most comprehensive look at teams, REAL Trends said it surveyed or interviewed thousands of real estate professionals “to understand the foundation and characteristics of today’s most successful teams.”

REAL Trends not only defined what a real estate team was but also included best practices for broker-owners in developing a team. The 41-page report remained the most definitive look at teams, and most recent until marketing automation leader Imprev recently released its team study. Imprev made real estate teams the focus of its Thought Leader Study, a biannual survey of real estate leaders it pioneered back in 2012.

Teams Have a Vast, Growing Impact

Real estate teams have been around for decades – literally – but the dominant trend towards teams having a growing influence on brokerages and their bottom line is clear. So clear, that REAL Trends is currently conducting another survey with the California Association of REALTORS® to define the economic impact of teams on brokerages better.

The Imprev Team Study gives us some hard data already. First, it documents that the popularity of real estate teams that has exploded in the last five years has had a significant impact on a brokerage’s sales volume. 76% of leaders surveyed said teams have a greater impact on their total sales volume today than they did five years ago.

More importantly was this statistic: real estate teams accounted for nearly one-third of the business at brokerages that have teams. Let me state that say that again: Nearly one out of every three transactions – 30% – broker-owners attributed to their teams. And it just wasn’t deal count. Teams contributed 29 cents out of every dollar in sales volume.

Teams, Teams Everywhere

An incredible 91% of brokerages have one or more teams, with 45% having six to 20 teams, according to the study. The Imprev Thought Leader Survey of brokerage leaders represented firms of all sizes across the U.S. that were responsible for approximately half of all U.S. residential real estate transactions last year.

Brokerages with 50 agents or fewer represented 20% of the participants. Firms with 51 to 100 agents represented 19% of the participants. Firms with 101 to 500 agents represented 46% of the participants. And firms with 501 or more agents represented 15% of the participants. So, there’s a broad mix of broker-owners surveyed of firms of all sizes.

Teams Success is Coming at a Cost

What the Imprev Team Study does that is different from the REAL Trends work is its focus on how teams have impacted the broker-owner. It does an exceptional job of looking at how brokers think about teams, the challenges they have in managing teams as well as pain points surrounding teams.

One of the most insightful pain points: While real estate broker leaders say teams are good, success in increasing team business is coming at a cost. While real estate brokerage leaders are in near universal agreement (80%) that “Teams helped me grow my brokerage business over the last 5 years, nearly two-thirds (64%) of the leaders polled say “Teams cut into my brokerage profits.”

Another big pain point, not surprisingly, is related to technology. The Imprev study found a big technology deficit from its survey of real estate leaders: that technology doesn’t always support teams and agents. The vast majority of leaders polled (71%) say that among the most important things that management can do to serve teams better is to provide technology that supports both teams and individual agents. This was second only to “Create guidelines, team models to assist new teams” at 78%.

More Team Data to Sift Through

The best thing about both the first REAL Trends Teams study a couple of years ago and this year’s Imprev Teams Study is they are free. Imprev does want your email address, but the download of the summary findings PDF is available for free here. The REAL Trends study is available via Issuu here.

They are both packed full of information about teams – lots of golden nuggets to glean for business leaders and marketers. Kudos to both Thought Leaders behind these separate team studies: REAL Trends leader Steve Murray and Imprev leader Renwick Congdon for helping advance the understanding of an essential dynamic of the future of real estate.