Home buying trends for 2011
The 2011 National Association of Realtors® Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers surveyed 5,708 home buyers and sellers, learning that the demographics of home buyers and types of homes being sold has shifted drastically this year, mostly due to job instability and insecurity as well as tightened lending and that more buyers are married, older and have higher incomes and there is a striking lack of diversity in the home buyer pool with 85 percent of American buyers identifying themselves as Caucasian, and almost all were born in America and primarily speak English.
Why are consumers buying? They cite a desire to own a home as a top reason to buy with affordability close behind. Most people purchased a home because of life changes like a new baby, relocated job or empty nest, and because it was “just the right time to buy.” Buyers also expect to live in their homes longer now, an average of 15 years.
Consumers using the web as a starting point declined this year from 91 percent to 88 percent and we recently reported that home buyers now spend 12 weeks shopping for their home and tour an average of 12 homes. This year, more than half of all buyers were extremely satisfied with the home buying process, but what is most exciting is that buyers that search for a home on the web are more likely to use an agent than those who don’t and nearly half of all buyers find online the home they purchased.
Charts, charts, charts
Our in-depth coverage of the recent NAR stats has helped the industry to understand not only what NAR reports but what other indicators to consider, painting a picture of a nation that uses the web and may find their home online, but almost all rely on a real estate professional and are actually satisfied with the process.
Sometimes words do not click with everyone and our number crunchers prefer to see data charted, so we’re bringing all of the charts to you that outline what and why buyers purchased this year (click any image to enlarge):