What is the Future of Real Estate Agents in 2024 & Beyond?

With so many changes in the real estate industry lately, many people are asking “what is the future of real estate agents?”

From rapidly advancing technology, startups focused on helping buyers find a home without an agent, artificial intelligence, and even recent regulatory changes, it can feel daunting to be an agent right now.

If you’re not zoomed out or looking in from the outside, it can feel like the career you love so much (that pays so well) is on the line.

In this guide, though, we’re going to dive deep to figure out whether you should be stressed out.

Or whether you should actually embrace these changes — and go with the flow.

By the time you’re done reading, you’ll know exactly how to find your place with the rapid changes the industry is facing right now and what to do to secure your future as a real estate agent.

Will Real Estate Agents Be Replaced By Technology?

With the real estate industry rapidly transforming over the past few decades, from virtual tours and online listings to artificial intelligence and even the blockchain, it’s hard to deny that agents are nervous.

We think this nervousness comes from a lack of understanding, though.

Since everything is changing, it tends to threaten the comfort zone you may have found yourself in.

Which, when you look at it with a different set of eyes, actually presents an amazing opportunity.

If you’re currently nervous about whether or not technology will replace real estate agents, take a step back, zoom out, and look at the industry from the 10,000ft view.

While all of this technology is shaking things up, you have to stop and realize what it’s attempting to do at the core of it all: make life easier for both agents AND home buyers and sellers.

What it can’t do, though, is replace the white glove service that great agents are known for delivering.

So while we may not necessarily have a crystal ball and can’t accurately predict the future, what we can say is that there will always be a place for the personalized, white glove approach to real estate.

If you’re an agent that prides yourself on the relationships that you build, how deeply you serve your clients, and the passion that you have for the industry, you’re going to be hard to replace.

What technology WILL do, though, is make your life even easier and even more effective.

And that translates to making even more money and impacting even more lives — if you lean into it.

Impact Of Technology On Real Estate Agents

It’s impossible to deny, though, that technology is going to continue to impact real estate agents.

In a perfect world, startups and founders would love to be able to make the claim that they’re completely removing agents from the homebuying and home selling process.

What they tend to forget when they’re pursuing those goals is that there’s a human at the other end of the transaction, too.

Home buyers and sellers may not necessarily want to embrace AI. They tend to want the personalized touch that great agents give them. They may not ever completely trust AI and technology in the process.

But over the last few years, the impact of technology on real estate has definitely been felt.

From technology like offering virtual tours that saw a huge uptake in usage during the COVID pandemic to remote communication tools and even AI-powered chatbots to book qualified appointments, technology in real estate has come a long way.

The technology growth (and impact) isn’t going to slow down any time soon.

That means you’ll need to strike a balance between being able to use it to your advantage while also delivering the value in the human experience and expertise that you bring to the table.

Your goal should always revolve around giving both buyers and sellers the best experience possible.

Even if you’re using technology to help you do it.

Main Challenges Real Estate Agents Face

As you learn to embrace technology to provide an even better experience for your clients, there are going to be challenges that you’ll run into.

There’s a few big challenges you’ll need to learn how to navigate.

Technology Advancing Even Further

If there’s one thing you can be certain of, it’s that technology is going to continue changing and evolving.

Spending some of your time staying up-to-date with these changes will be critical if you want to stay relevant as the years pass by.

Increased Competition

Every year, more and more real estate businesses begin emerging on a daily basis.

This means the market will continue to be packed with new agents all hungry for real success.

It also means that it’s going to get harder and harder to generate leads, convert those leads into clients, and then clients into closed deals.

Consumers Changing Behavior

Consumer’s attitudes are going to continue shifting as time goes by, too.

While most experienced agents understand that they need to move where the market moves, newer agents could struggle with figuring this out while technology continues making its way into the industry.

This is especially true as millennials and gen Z’ers shift into becoming the biggest market segment.

Economy Changing

While the economy is currently in flux, when it finally starts to settle down agents will need to adapt to the new conditions that are being seen.

Realtors need to prepare strategies for what’s happening in the economy, from unemployment to inflation and interest rates.

Maintaining A Balance

Then there’s maintaining a work-life balance as you’re keeping up with these challenges.

An increased workload, between finding and signing new clients while keeping up with changes in technology, can lead to burnout for many agents.

Staying aware of this and keeping it from seeping into your personal life will be critical.

Where Real Estate Agents Provide Value

Something a lot of agents are learning as technology advances is that the goal is for homebuyers and sellers to be able to move through the process by themselves — without an agent involved.

The biggest area where real estate agents can provide value with these changes is in the fact that things RARELY go according to plan.

There’s so many different obstacles and hurdles inside the process that it’s easy for buyers and sellers to simply get overwhelmed.

Then, you couple that with the fact that most buyers and sellers simply don’t want to learn how to be an agent and it starts becoming more apparent where agents can deliver the most value.

By thoroughly understanding the process, where each of these hurdles and obstacles exist, and how to instill confidence in your buyers and sellers as you help them navigate the process, you can stand out against the technology platforms that are looking to replace you.

The support, expertise, and experience you bring to the table is where buyers and sellers will always appreciate how you’re serving them.

What Is A Real Estate Agent’s Future?

Like we mentioned earlier, we don’t have a crystal ball and can’t predict the future.

What we do know is that many startups, founders, and CEOs are focused on bringing technology to the world that helps homebuyers and sellers complete the transaction without an agent.

The future for real estate agents may look quite a bit similar to what you’re experiencing today.

The only difference will be how you’re using technology to make transactions smoother, more effective, and (ultimately) more profitable.

If you’re able to quickly adapt to the new technology, increase your volume to help offset the negative impact on your commissions, and reduce your operating and client acquisition costs, you can boost your business profit and secure your place in the future.

The key to your long-term success revolves around placing a heavy emphasis on providing white glove service, personalized care, and your own unique experience — something that technology can’t replicate.

In the future, those qualities will still matter to buyers and sellers and may become even more important as more and more agents try to cut corners and take shortcuts with technology.

Real Estate Trends To Watch Out For

It’s not just technology that will change the future for real estate agents.

While tech plays a major role in the changes, there’s trends that you’ll need to stay up-to-date on.

Green Building

Sustainable and green living has made a major impact with home buyers, sellers, and builders.

Think things like rainwater harvesting, solar panels, energy-efficient doors and windows, green roofing systems, and zero-energy homes.

Sustainability in home development will become more and more important as time goes on and younger, more climate-conscious generations begin purchasing homes.

Immersive Experience

Virtual reality is bringing a new experience to home buyers.

Instead of having to physically visit a property, virtual reality lets them explore the property in the comfort of their own home — or in your office.

They can look at (and through) properties anywhere in the world.

Using VR tours and augmented reality apps can help you stand apart from other agents in your area and provide a truly immersive experience for your clients.

Decentralized Finance

Investors are always looking for ways to simplify and secure their transactions while generating income.

Decentralized finance applications and technologies are already beginning to disrupt finance, working their way into other industries, too.

The blockchain and De-Fi will transform the way transactions are taking place, making them more efficient and secure.

In fact, in 2021, a Kyiv investor purchased a house using only Bitcoin — pretty impressive stuff!

Tech Homes

With technology becoming even more integrated into our daily lives, smart homes will become more and more popular.

New agents should be up-to-date on the trends with home technology and smart technology.

These systems can range from security to the Internet of Things but their goal is all the same — to make people’s lives more efficient and secure.

How To Secure Your Future As A Real Estate Agent

If you want to secure your future as a real estate agent, you can relax a bit.

It’s hard to say exactly what the future will bring but one thing is certain: clients will always appreciate the white glove service and support that a highly-qualified agent can give them.

As the future becomes today, though, you’ll want to start learning how to lean into the technology that’s looking to shake up the real estate industry.

It’s worth taking time to learn how to use technology to automate more of your mundane and menial tasks that don’t necessarily require a personal touch.

You can also learn which new platforms are coming out and figure out where they might be able to help you, where they pose a threat, and what potential clients would want to use them for.

Then you can position yourself around those platforms so you stand out.

Finally, you’ll want to make sure you have a strong digital footprint and that you’re doing what you can to organically generate inbound marketing leads.

These organic inbound leads have already expressed an interest in wanting to work with an agent so you won’t have to worry so much about technology stealing them away from you.

A great way to do that, and use technology to assist you, is with a combination of direct mail and call answering services like Call Porter.

The combination of direct mail marketing when combined with a call answering service means you’ll be able to generate your own leads while booking pre-qualified appointments directly to your calendar.

That lets you dive deeper with each client without stressing about where your next deal is coming from or having to answer your phone while you’re sitting down eating dinner.

It’s how smart agents are bringing themselves into 2024 and securing their future — even as technology begins to surround them.

To learn more about using direct mail, check out our guide on Direct Mail For Real Estate Agents.

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