Industry Decoded: Jack Miller
Illustration by Lanette Behiry/Real Estate News

Industry Decoded: It's a buy-low market 

Companies are built in down markets, and savvy business leaders should take advantage of deals on tech, services and more — right now.

September 22, 2023
3 minutes

Thinking big about residential real estate success requires a big-picture perspective. Industry Decoded features industry experts who can enrich your understanding of issues affecting the industry as a whole.

"Be fearful when others are greedy, and be greedy when others are fearful." — The other Buffett (RIP Jimmy Buffett.)

The residential real estate herd is doing the most predictable thing right now.

  • They are not going to conferences (I have more to say about that).

  • They are not investing in their businesses with coaching and training.

  • They are not out there networking, trying to put a deal together, or recruiting.

  • They are not trying new strategies, tools, or practices.

Instead, they are hunkered down, waiting.

Waiting for interest rates to go down. Waiting for inventory. Waiting for someone to call them and say they need to sell. Waiting until the market gets better before they invest in their business.

Waiting. Waiting. Waiting.

Then, there is another group.

It's a small group right now, and a pretty smart one. They've figured out a few things the herd has not.

They've looked down the road a bit and know that a slower market now means a busier market in the future. That the market will recover. That real estate is cyclical, that the market is now in one of its periodic low points.

And, they have figured out that right now — this moment — is a buy-low market.

What does that mean? It means: Everything. Is. On. Sale. Right. Now. (And, in many cases, at great prices!)

Like what, you say?

Technology. Vendors are dying to do deals. Nobody is coming to their booths at conferences, and their sales teams have flatlined. You could make the deal of your lifetime on something that will help your business right now.

Services. Service providers are also waiting for work to return. Industry videographers, photographers, website builders and marketers don't have enough work. They may be willing to do work now they would have turned down at a busier time, or to invest their labor in a new concept that is a win-win for you and for them.

Great people. With tens and tens of thousands of people laid off in real estate, mortgage, and related industries, there are some incredible staff, managers, and executives currently jobless. Great people with skills and work ethics were let go due to the change in the market; they could be yours!

Companies. There are brokerage owners, team owners, mortgage company owners, title company owners, and service provider owners who don't want to go through a rebuild. They're done, ready for something else, ready to retire, ready for a different life. And two years ago, they wouldn't talk to you because they were making so much money. Now they will.

Everyone "knows" that companies are built in down markets. How many leaders act on that knowledge?

So, what are you going to do about it? What are you going to teach your agents to do about it?

I hope you get greedy and get into action. I know I am.

Jack Miller has held leadership roles in the real estate industry for over two decades and is currently CEO and president of T3 Sixty, one of real estate's leading management consultancies. (T3 Sixty founder Stefan Swanepoel also founded Real Estate News.) Jack also contributes to the Swanepoel Trends Report, writing about brokerage industry trends, technology in real estate and emerging business models. The views expressed in this column are solely those of the author.

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