Here's an undeniable fact for you: Hispanics are playing a huge role in the U.S. real estate market and they'll continue to do so. Ignore this point at your peril. |
The Wall Street Journal has just reported that Hispanics are the fastest growing segment in both first-time buyers and in the luxury market.
Plus, in five years, four out of every 10 new households that form in the U.S. will be headed by someone of Hispanic descent--more than any other single racial or ethnic group, reports the Demand Institute, a non-advocacy, nonprofit think tank. In fact, in 2014, 320,000 new Hispanic households were formed, representing an astounding 40 percent of total U.S. household growth.
And the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAHREP) says that since 2000, the number of Hispanic owner households has increased 61 percent, and every year, one million U.S.-born Hispanics enter adulthood. What's more, 65 percent of top agents in NAHREP surveyed expect 2015 to be a "breakout year" for Hispanic homeownership because many Hispanics are credit-ready and would buy now if homes were available.
Jason Madiedo, president of NAHREP, says it's all about pent-up demand and that Latinos are ready to buy homes now. He says that their biggest obstacle coming into today's market isn't credit; it's lack of available housing. And he adds that the readiness of this first-time buyer market represents a whole new purchase cycle that can drive recovery in local communities and put the housing recession behind us once and for all.
Is your mouth watering? It should be. Here are five tips you can start using today to tap the growing Hispanic market:
1. Take time to build the relationship - In general, Hispanics interact in a more personal manner and prefer to connect on a personal level before getting into the details of business. So take your time before going into sales mode.
2. Involve the entire family - Hispanics are often very family oriented and see themselves as part of a group or clan. They also tend to do and buy things with their family in mind. When you're showing homes, expect to include the family in the visits. (If you or one of your team members speak Spanish, this is an extra bonus.)
3. Know and use ready-made resources - NAR can help. At REALTOR® Magazine Online, you can get free, ready-to-use, information-packed handouts available in Spanish with accurate, comprehensive information on the real estate process. Also, NAR's "At Home with Diversity" section on REALTOR.org offers lots of information about fair housing, diversity certification programs and other resources.
4. Team up with a good mortgage broker - A good broker may be able to help with the intricacies of today's mortgage landscape. The incoming president of NAHREP, Teresa Palacios Smith, says in 2014, Hispanics were turned down for loans at twice the rate of white borrowers. "Latinos in general have different underwriting needs, as there may be several family members living together and several wage earners contributing to household income. Some may be self-employed," she says. "All these factors make it more difficult to qualify for a loan."
5. Network with your nearest NAHREP chapter - Smith has said one of her goals as NAHREP president is to facilitate relationships between industry stakeholders, real estate professionals and housing professionals. "We want everyone to know what NAHREP is and to realize it's a place where you can't afford not to be a member," Smith says.
Share what's on your mind. What's the Hispanic market growth like in your area? What's preventing you from tapping this market? What can you start doing to offer and improve your services to this market? Bubba Mills is executive vice president of Corcoran Consulting and Coaching Inc. (800-957-8353), an international consulting and coaching company that specializes in performance coaching and the implementation of sound business systems for residential REALTOR, mortgage brokers and real estate companies.
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