Realty ownership skews higher in age, but with the industry’s continued adoption of technology, that’s fast changing.
For example, PropertyGuys.com’s top-performing franchises are all millennial-owned, and given that the 2019 Franchise Canada Directory noted real estate has the second-highest five-year growth rate (111%), after maid and cleaning services (129%), the evidence suggests the trend will continue.
“Being the leader in the real estate technology industry in Canada, millennials seek us out, but we profile our targets to who we’re trying to attract to our business and millennials are very high on that list,” said PropertyGuys.com’s founder and CEO Ken LeBlanc. “The new real estate professionals are the ones who have no preconceived notions about how to buy and sell houses. They’re comfortable dealing with people online. Millennials don’t like to pay for a whole lot, especially highly inflated commissions. We’re confident that our new customer—the next generation, which is super attentive to where they spend money—will relate very well to millennials steering the ship as franchise owners.”
Technology is certainly part and parcel of the millennial business philosophy—although in this day and age, there’s no choice. Gone are the days where clients spend an entire day being driven from listing to listing and told what to look for, says LeBlanc.
“Our millennials can really associate well with the new customer, who really wants to leverage technology,” he said. “They do their homework online and know what to look for. They’re very versed in social media—that’s what influences people nowadays, whether it’s which movie to go see or which restaurant to go eat at.”
Zachary Mills, owner of REMAX Centre City Realty in Prince George, British Columbia, is only 32 and, after buying the brokerage 11 months ago, already wise enough to realize that a realty brokerage is only as successful as how well its top-down culture is embraced by employees.
“We’ve been the number one brokerage in town for the last 32 years and still are,” he said. “It’s simply a matter of putting the right systems and people in place. I just got back from REMAX’s national broker-owner meeting and the average age is 61 years old. They’re rolling out new technology and they want people who can explain things not just to the staff, but to them too. It’s nice to see reverse mentorship happening in the office with younger agents helping out older agents.”