Real estate market downturns are expected and normal. All markets are cyclical, with waves of ups and downs due to various factors. In the industry, mild-to-severe downturns have specific characteristics in common, such as high mortgage rates, low interest by consumers, owners dropping prices or waiting to sell, and boomtowns losing appeal. These periodic downturns only sometimes result in crashes. They often act as incredible opportunities to increase efficiency and sustainability for agencies.
This guide covers steps that every title agency owner and stakeholder should use to manage the market successfully and prepare for eventual upturns:
Follow National Market News
One of the best ways to weather real estate market downturns is by looking for opportunities in the current market. Professionals often get caught up in the local news and trends, missing national forecasts. This means prospects for current and future business should be noticed, such as mortgage program changes that make homeownership less onerous or refinancing easier in a down market.
For example, The Biden administration also approved an upcoming reduction of mortgage fees on FHA loans that begins on March 20. Therefore, we expect more transactions from the elderly, disabled, military, and international buyers. Lower fees promise to attract more first-time buyers in the low-to-moderate income range.
Restructure and Streamline the Business
Real estate market downturns allow owners and administrators to reconsider daily operations. It’s an opportunity to think deeply about what works and doesn’t within a title agency. It’s the perfect time to eliminate old technology and outmoded ways of thinking. Employees, clients, and partners have grown tired of out-of-date tools, processes, and face-to-face transactions. Quick, easy electronic options are in demand.
Professionals, consumers, and others also desire greater efficiency through standardization. They’re seeking this on local and national levels, as seen with the interest in RONs because of severe state-to-state legal differences related to notarizations and the high number of remote transaction demands. They also desire standard procedures to improve convenience, transparency, and trust.
Invest in Long-Term Employee Relationships
Lastly, real estate market downturns are the best time for the agency to invest in current employees. As seen recently, many businesses are conducting mass layoffs. During a downturn, when employees experience lower requests and sales, management must implement strategies to prevent overhiring and future staff cuts.
Top strategies include investing in advanced technologies and skill-based training to increase customer service and productivity regardless of the market status. These procedures must prepare employees to hit the ground running when the cycle returns up, such as when positive changes occur with legislation, seasons, rates, or inventory.
System 2 Thinking (S2T) is a boutique Title Industry Advisory Firm specializing in Title Insurance Licensing, Mergers and Acquisitions, Compliance Advisory, Process Improvement, and Technology Rollouts. We have been market leaders for over a decade, successfully solving the industry’s toughest challenges while providing unparalleled advisory services. Our partners range from top title agencies, mortgage businesses, and technology startups to Fortune 1000 companies, driving innovation to fuel business acceleration. No matter who you are or your unique challenge, S2T guarantees fast and efficient solutions. Search our comprehensive services today or contact us for a free consultation!