Technology is changing how Americans buy and sell homes in unexpected ways, including how they work with real estate agents and brokers. That’s a key finding of one of the largest surveys of real estate consumers ever conducted.
According to the study, conducted by the National Association of Realtors, nine out of 10 home buyers use a real estate agent in the search process, but use of the Internet to search for a home has risen dramatically over time, from only 2 percent of buyers in 1995 to 77 percent in 2005. The next largest source of information for buyers is a yard sign, mentioned by 71 percent of buyers.
The 2005 National Association of Realtors (NAR) Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, based on more than 7,800 responses to a questionnaire, is the latest in a series of surveys evaluating various characteristics of home buyers and sellers.
NAR President Thomas M. Stevens from Vienna, Va., said the findings underscore the complexity of the home-buying process. “Buyers who use the Internet in searching for a home are more likely to use a real estate agent than non-Internet users, and consumers rely on professionals to provide context,...