The real estate industry continues its measured recovery from the devastating recession of a decade ago. Meanwhile, a new norm is forming. It’s harder to find first-time buyers among young adults. It’s harder to find second-home buyers among middle-aged adults. And it’s harder to get older adults to put their homes on the market.
Against this backdrop, the money spent to advertise homes, apartments, land, and mortgages is forecast to show tepid growth, from $30.1 billion in 2018 to $30.4 billion this year. Part of it may be because agents can now reach potential buyers easier (and free) via listings on their own websites and via basic posts on their social media pages. Today, more agents use Facebook and LinkedIn to market homes than they use yard signs and open houses.
Things might look rosier if the home-sales forecast looked better. Sales are expected to decline by about 2.5%, fueled by this new norm. Despite a decade of recovery, it’s still harder to sell a home than it was before the Great Recession.
The long-range picture looks better. Population growth, demands on housing, the availability of housing, and other factors foretell better times. Our forecast over the next five years shows healthier increases in annual ad spending for everything except print and broadcast media. By 2024 real estate should swell to a $41.4 billion ad category, with online media accounting for nearly 77% of all spending.
This report examines how agents, mortgage lenders, apartment managers, and developers spend their advertising dollars and how it continues evolving.
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Chapter 1: Homebuyer Doldrums
Figure 1.1. Home Availability Gap: Plans to Buy vs. Plans to Sell
Figure 1.2: U.S. Adults plan to purchase a home during the coming year
Figure 1.3: Percentage Rise in Annual Household Income Levels for ‘Successful’ Homebuyers since 2008
Figure 1.4: U.S. Residential Housing, Permits vs. Starts – 2001-2019
Figure 1.5: U.S. Non-Residential Construction Spending, 2018-2019
Chapter 2: Real Estate Ad Spending: Glacial Change
Figure 2.1: U.S. Total Real Estate-related Ad Spending, 2017-2019
Figure 2.2: Total U.S. 2019 Forecasts for Real Estate-related Ad Spending
Figure 2.3: Digital’s Share of U.S. Real Estate Ad Spending, 2006-2019
Figure 2.4: Importance of Online Sources of Information to U.S. Homebuyers
Figure 2.5: U.S. Total Ad Spending, Real Estate Agents and Brokers, 2017-2019
Figure 2.6: U.S. Total Ad Spending for Real Estate Developers, 2017-2019
Figure 2.7: U.S. Total Ad Spending for Mortgage Providers, 2017-2019
Figure 2.8: U.S. Total Ad Spending for Rental Property Management, 2017-2019
Chapter 3: Online Ad Spending
Figure 3.1: Total U.S. Real Estate-related 2019 Online Ad Spending Forecast by Category
Figure 3.2: Methods Agents Use to Market Homes for Sale
Figure 3.3: U.S. Total Online Ad Spending by Real Estate Agents and Brokers, 2018-2019 with Forecasts to 2024
Figure 3.4: U.S. Total Online Ad Spending by Rental Property Managers, 2018-2019 with Forecasts to 2024
Figure 3.5: U.S. Total Online Ad Spending by Mortgage Providers, 2018-2019 with Forecasts to 2024
Figure 3.6: U.S. Total Online Ad Spending by Real Estate Developers 2018-2019 with Forecasts to 2024
Chapter 4: Conclusions & Observations
Appendix A: Real Estate Local Ad Spending Report (LA$R)
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