The 2008 Massachusetts Profile of Home Buyers & Sellers, compiled by the National Association of Realtors®, found that over 90 percent of all home buyers and sellers are using the Internet as part of their home buying and selling process. Yet despite the increased Internet usage, over 90 percent of buyers and sellers are also choosing to work with a real estate professional as well.
The study also found that 47 percent of home buyers reported using social networking web sites, such as MySpace, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Friendster, which is up from 34 percent last year. Among home buyers aged 18 to 24, 87 percent reported using social networking sites, which is up from 50 percent last year. Twenty-seven percent of the 18 to 24 year-old group reported using them every day or nearly every day.
Because of the run up in oil prices in 2008, the study reported that commuting costs were considered as very or somewhat important by 84 percent of buyers when considering which home to purchase.
Characteristics of Home Buyers
• The median age of home buyers was 39 years old for the second consecutive year.
• The median income (which is reported from 2007 household data) was up to $88,100 compared to $84,400 in 2006.
• 58% of home buyers were married couples, 18 percent single females, 12 percent single males, and 10 percent unmarried couples.
• 10% of home buyers were born outside of the United States compared to nine percent nationally.
• 53% of first-time home buyers were between 25 and 34 years old.
• First-time home buyers accounted for 48 percent of recent home purchases and had a median income of $80,600 compared to $60,600 among first-time home buyers nationally.
Despite the credit issues in 2008, 90 percent of buyers financed their home purchase (98 percent of first-time buyers compared to 82 percent of repeat buyers). Savings was the chief source of the downpayment for 74 percent of first-time buyers with 44 percent of repeat buyers using proceeds from the sale of their primary residence.
Forty-seven percent of all buyers believe that their home purchase was a better financial investment than stocks, with an additional 30 percent of buyers feeling their home purchase was at least as good an investment as stocks. However, to make their home purchase, 57 percent of home buyers reported that they had made sacrifices, such as reducing spending on luxury items, entertainment or clothing.
Characteristics of Home Sellers/Seller Experience
• The median age of the home seller was 47 years (which is up from 43 years in 2007)
• The median income was $105,500.
• The typical seller owned their home for seven years.
• 69% of home sellers were married and 61 percent had no children under 18 years old living at home.
• 37% of home sellers did not reduce their asking price before the home was sold.
• 33% of sellers did offer incentives to attract buyers, most often that assistance was applied to closing costs and home warranty policies.
These statistics can be very useful for providing information to prospective customers and clients. For complete state survey results, click here.