Is Hyper-Local Specialization the Answer to Real Estate Recovery?

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, certain parts of the economy are beginning to re-open. However, even with re-opening, true economic recovery could take more time, particularly if a predicted second wave of COVID-19 comes to pass.

For real estate sales professionals, the question becomes how to navigate this uncertainty and find a map to recovery even when we don’t know what the road ahead looks like.

Could hyperlocal specialization be that map?

In a recent REM Online article, “Agents who specialize will recover their business faster,” Engel & Völkers President and CEO Anthony Hitt posited just that.

“We are facing the strong possibility of a recession and depressed markets because of the uncertain trajectory of COVID-19,” Hitt wrote. “However, when the market rebounds – and it will – owning a niche or specialization will be essential in helping agents revive their businesses all the more quickly.”

Hitt went on to outline ways that sales professionals could carve out their own niche. His recommendations included:

  • Positioning themselves as a leader in their local communities, such as through social media. Real estate agents could inform residents about what is happening in their community or supporting local organizations through financial assistance. (GeoWarehouse recently reported on agencies that are doing exactly this and finding ways to give back.)
  • Focus marketing spend on core neighbourhoods. Hitt recommended geo-targeting potential home sellers in neighbourhoods the agent is already in or specializations they are already familiar with (such as luxury high-rises, golf communities, waterfront homes, and so on).
  • Anticipate what the new normal will look like in their neighbourhood. Recovery will look different everywhere, Hitt noted. But by anticipating these needs – such as homes with more yard space, online ordering convenience, or proximity to grocery stores — agents can be prepared to act quickly.

Read the full REM Online article here: https://www.remonline.com/agents-who-specialize-will-recover-their-business-faster/

How to Find a Niche and Become Hyperlocal

If you want to tap into the hyperlocal or specialized market, you need the tools to help you get there.

a) If you already have a niche or specialization…

Your tools can help you drill even deeper down into your target audience. For instance, you might:

  • Use the Home Value Range tools from Teranet to show prospective home sellers their estimated property value.
  • Dig deep into neighbourhood demographics and comparable sales through online reports.
  • Use the property search map to review neighbourhood layouts and look for properties that fit your community’s anticipated needs. For instance, when you search by map, you could easily see properties with more yard space.

b) If you don’t have a niche or specialization…

  • Review current real estate trends through insight reports, such as the Teranet Monthly Market Insights Report to identify up-and-coming segments.
  • If you are not tied to a specific location, use reports, such as the HoodQ Report integration in the GeoWarehouse e-Store, to explore neighbourhoods around you. These reports can show school catchment areas, parks and recreation, transit, convenience amenities, and more.
  • Be prepared to act quickly and become a property expert wherever you are needed. Technology, like the Property Details Report, can help you get up to speed fast so you can have nuanced conversations with clients.

What do you think — is hyperlocal specialization the answer to real estate recovery?

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