Here are 6 ways consumers use tech to buy real estate

by Barbra Murray

 

In a new report, Real Estate in a Digital Age, the National Association of Realtors offers insight into homebuyers’ technology usage habits. It’s a rare consumer who doesn’t incorporate technology into his or her homebuying pursuits – 95 percent of them search online – but there are distinctions between precisely what they do with the technology, how they do it and when.

There are a number of ways homebuyers, from Millennials to the Silent Generation, use technology in their homebuying process:

 

1. Ninety-five percent of homebuyers utilized websites to find homes for sale, with 99 percent of Millennials incorporating the method into their shopping activity.

 

2. In an effort to get the bigger picture of a home, so to speak, 36 percent of homebuyers included online video sites in their search.

 

3. Whether they’re first-timers or previous owners, 13 percent of all buyers commenced their hunt for a home by going online to research the buying process.

 

4. Most buyers searching websites prefer not to be tethered to a desktop; 58 percent of all homebuyers found their abode via a mobile device, and a notable 14 percent located an agent through the same means.

 

5. Buyers utilizing the Internet found detailed property information, maps, neighborhood information and virtual tours very useful, but photos still top the list, with 89 percent of homebuyers pointing to pictures as the most important website feature.

 

6. Buyers aren’t exactly aging out of Internet-based homebuying searches, but as the years pile on, reliance on the Internet becomes less common. While 93 percent of homebuyers 36 years and younger frequently perform website searches, only 88 percent of those between the ages of 37 and 51 use the Internet regularly. The figure drops to just 54 percent for buyers over 71.