New REALTOR Membership Leveling Off

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Indications are that the growth in new Realtor® membership may be leveling off.

Recent informal discussions with leaders of some of the larger state and local associations of Realtors® revealed that the rapid growth of membership might be leveling off in many markets. This is just as total membership has recovered from the recession low in the 950,000 level to nearly 1.4 million.

One outcome of this could be intensified competition for those already in the business. With new, low-cost competition throughout the market, this can’t be good news for incumbent brokerage firms. It also reinforces the need for all brokerage firms to revisit their offerings so that they are more tailored to this new environment. According to our rankings, the highest producers in the industry appear to have captured nearly 25 percent of all housing sales volume in 2018.

With the emergence of the iBuyer companies and other forms of low-cost brokerage firms, the total market share of both agents and transactions is shrinking from where it was three to five years ago.

The ability to build a brokerage company in this environment remains bright, but it is not what it was in the past.

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This article originally appeared in the August 2019 issue of the REAL Trends Newsletter. It is reprinted with permission of REAL Trends, Inc. Copyright © 2019. To read the rest of this issue & more, please visit our Real Trends page online.

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