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Do You Know What Your Real Estate Consumers are Reading?

imagesA recent edition of this column focused on a number of industry current trends and forces that, taken together, strongly support the idea that, moving forward, brokerages are going to have to take a much more activist position regarding the activities of their agents—most especially with respect to the quality and nature of the services and consumer experiences they are delivering.

The industry disruptors driving this issue were identified as highly motivated consumers, national portal premium agent programs, the high probability of definitive “independent contractors” litigation, potential CFPB regulatory initiatives, and the increasingly dissatisfied “counselor” agent sector. Taken together, they deliver a clear message that is best represented by the CFPB motto, Flight into Quality.

Given the potential seriousness of this situation, it has become critically important that brokers, executives and managers began the process of understanding where the objectives of these disruptors come together in the marketplace and what sources are impacting the opinions and impressions of today’s consumer.

Screen Shot 2016 02 02 at 9.42.55 AMConsumer Reports is a publication that has been published and distributed monthly by the Consumer Reports organization since 1936. The organization currently has over 7.3 million subscribers and a $21 million annual testing and evaluation budget. The organization and its publication are considered to be one of the leading consumer influences in the country.

The March edition of Consumer Reports featured an in-depth piece on the real estate marketplace entitled, "The Real Estate of Real Estate." The subtitle spoke to its contents: "New population patterns, lending practices and housing preferences are changing the rules, whether you are buying, selling, renting or remodeling."