For a long time, the real estate market was targeted at people who grew up in a specific environment and had certain values that could be calculated and interpreted by experts. However, today there's a new generation in town. Gen Z homebuyers are about to enter the real estate market. Generation Z, also known as the “Net” or “Digital” generation, includes people born between approximately 1996 and 2010. The oldest of them are now in their twenties, and many are starting to enter the real estate market for the first time.
What Makes Gen Z Different?
Researchers have found that the concerns and belief systems of this generation differ dramatically from both Baby Boomers and Millennials. Gen Z is the least likely to believe in ideals. They have high amounts of student debt, with 46% feeling concerned and overwhelmed by it. Because most have lived through many events throughout the last 25 years, and all have lived with radical global change, they have more feelings of being destabilized and insecure. They have seen an unprecedented amount of technological change.
They are heavily dependent and constant users of technology, such as smartphones and tablets. They are better educated, more underemployed, and more culturally diverse than the generations before them. This new generation is more conservative than previous generations, but its members have an entrepreneurial bent. Many of them eschew traditional careers and opt for freelancing instead. Perhaps seeing older generations struggling and living through the financial crisis made them think differently.
Gen Z in Real Estate
Real estate professionals tapped a five-member panel known as “Gen Z Consumers” to share insight into the future of real estate. They discussed that this generation places great importance on home ownership and sees it as an ultimate life goal. In fact, 97% of Gen Zers believe they will own a home in the future. 81% plan to hire a real estate professional during the home-buying process. Their most used social media sites are Snapchat, Twitter, Tumblr, and Instagram, and they research these apps the most. Many expect to buy their first home between the ages of 26 and 30.
They also found that many want brands to contact them on social media rather than through email or online advertisements. Half of Gen Z use their phones to search for a better price when shopping at a retail store, perhaps reflecting their existence in a digital society marked by technological innovation and instant connectivity. Most would rather save money than spend it. They will likely look for ways to save money in the home-buying process, perhaps opting for affordable and functional homes. Most use their phones to research purchases before buying. Half of this generation identifies as business seekers. Nearly three-quarters expect to experience significant failure before achieving success. The vast majority of Gen Z believe their online experiences will help them achieve their goals. They prefer the suburban lifestyle, like Millennials, but only 17% want to live in the same place where they grew up.
Unlike generations past, many of whom remember a time when there was no internet or cell phones, Gen Z has an affinity with today's digital world. In fact, 90% of them plan to buy a house online. And because they live in an age where everything is immediate, this will most certainly impact how they shop and buy a home.
As Trem Global, we position ourselves to address this growing group of potential buyers by staying current on technology, updating our value proposition to appeal to the needs and wants of this generation, and learning all we can about this demographic.