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Expert Update - 02.17.22

3D Printing Offers Affordable Housing Solutions

The cost of building a home has risen an average of $25,000 since the beginning of the pandemic, with increasing costs and supply shortages leading many builders to scale back their new builds. A lack of housing supply plus higher sales prices has resulted in a shortage of affordable housing, particularly in rural, economically distressed, and underserved communities.

Enter 3D printing. Innovative companies are turning to the technology to produce materials used in building homes, reducing costs for both builders and buyers. While these homes tend to be on the smaller side (typically ranging from 1,200 to 1,500 sq. ft.), most offer the amenities and options buyers seek. Some even provide environmentally friendly efficiencies: one study found that 3D-printed homes may use 50% less energy than their traditionally built counterparts.1


Optimize Your Website for Voice Searches

Nearly 20% of mobile users rely on talk-to-text technology when searching online, but most web content isn't set up to be found through voice searches. Make your website more discoverable with these three best practices:

  1. Use phrases searchers would use. While keywords are still king, savvy website owners are adding key phrases: full sentences using common words and terms a searcher might use. For example, a prospect might conduct a voice search with the question: "What neighborhoods in my area have the best schools?" You might include a blog post on your site that includes the phrase, "These neighborhoods in [CITY] have the best schools".
  2. Make it easy for searchers to find you. Mobile users often use voice search to find a company's address, phone, or website. Include your contact information on your site so that digital assistants can find and display it for the searcher.
  3. Create a mobile-friendly site. Your site should use a responsive design, optimizing how your site is displayed on the user's device. Check your site on both mobile and desktop devices regularly, confirming that every page is displayed and working correctly.2


Four Tips for New Real Estate Agents

If you're embarking on a real estate career, you may be excited -- and a little overwhelmed -- by all the possibilities. Here are some tips to build a firm foundation for your new business:

  1. Do your research. Every real estate brokerage firm offers different advantages to newbies. Explore your options by networking with other agents and listening to what they say about their firm.
  2. Find a mentor. The fastest track to success is to emulate someone who's already successful in your chosen field. Choose a top producer who will guide you through your first few deals and provide support as you gain confidence.
  3. Talk to people you know. People in your life want to see you succeed. Tell your friends, family, acquaintances, and former colleagues about your new career and ask them to send referrals your way.
  4. Focus on generating leads. Methods for creating leads are endless, from social media and email marketing to paid ads. Don't be afraid to experiment with various lead-generating strategies to find the ones that work best for you.3


Residential Construction Employment Grows

Good news for the construction industry: Employment in residential building construction is up 5.3% compared to early 2020. Builders added a total of 4,400 jobs in January 2022 -- a good sign for an industry hard-hit by supply chain issues and labor shortages.4


5 Things Your HGTV-Loving Buyers Might Not Know

We all love an inspiring home improvement show, especially the ones featuring 30-minute transformations. But these shows could be setting your buyers up for disappointment. Here's why:

  1. Realtors work a lot. Some shows make it look like the real estate agent has a super easy job. Your clients might need a reminder of everything you do to get them into their dream home, from finding the right properties to negotiating contracts to preparing for closing.
  2. A "dream home" may not be perfect. Most of these shows have sponsors who provide all the newest materials and finishes, leading some buyers to think they must check off all their "must-haves" before landing on a property.
  3. Renovating is expensive. Construction shows can make it seem like home renovation projects can be completed for little money in days, or even hours. Encourage clients to meet with a licensed, bonded, and insured contractor before committing to a big project.
  4. Location is important. Buyers on renovation shows often choose style over location. You can help your buyers avoid this critical mistake by finding a property with the features they need in an area that works for their lifestyle.
  5. Buyers are armed with knowledge. Some shows portray buyers as naïve, but most conduct hours of research before even starting their search. Remind your buyers that they know more than they think they do -- and to follow their instincts when it's time to decide.5



Sources: 1;   2;   3; 4;   5

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