Agent Relationships and First-Time Homebuyers

15831956_sA client’s relationship with his or her real estate agent will largely determine how satisfied that customer is in the home buying or selling experience. Among first-time buyers, there is a strong need for agents to keep them comfortable and informed and offer a seamless process, according to the J.D. Power 2014 Home Buyer/Seller Satisfaction Study.

The study measures customer satisfaction among first-time and repeat home buyers and sellers with the nation’s largest real estate companies. Overall satisfaction is measured across four factors of the home-buying experience: agent/salesperson; real estate office; closing process; and variety of additional services. For satisfaction in the home-selling experience, the same four factors are evaluated plus a fifth factor, marketing.

Key data from the study conclude that although the agent-client relationship is the most important factor in determining satisfaction with buyers, for sellers, marketing of the home is the most important factor. This is because it is easier for sellers to assess how an agent is supporting the sale through tangible marketing efforts.

Overall satisfaction with real estate companies is higher among repeat customers, compared with first-time buyers or sellers. Buyers and sellers also tend to choose a real estate firm based on its reputation (30 percent of buyers, 35 percent of sellers), past experience with the agent (21 percent of buyers, 25 percent of sellers), and recommendations (24 percent of buyers, 21 percent of sellers).

Other findings include: the 2014 average listing price, $200,000, remains unchanged from 2013, the average number of open houses per listing is three, and the average number of showings to sell a home is nearly eight times.

Source: J.D. Power

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