Real estate professionals are most valuable person during home buying process: Survey

Real estate professionals were rated as the most valuable interaction during the home buying process, according to a recent survey. In April 2018, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) surveyed 4,000 active mortgage consumers, of which 16% were home buyers, as part of its annual Mortgage Consumer Survey (MCS).

The MCS is the largest survey of its kind in Canada and has been conducted since 1999. It provides insight into the behaviours, attitudes and expectations of Canadians when they take out, renew or refinance a mortgage.

According to the survey, 24% of first-time buyers and 34% of repeat buyers indicated the most valuable interaction during the home buying decision process came from real estate professionals. Here are the other key findings REALTORS® need to know.

Fifty-eight percent of first-time buyers rent for up to five years before purchasing their first home. When asked if they believed homeownership was a good long term investment, 74% of first-time buyers and 89% of repeat buyers agreed with the statement.

CMHC graphic.

The main factor considered by all home buyers when buying a home is price and affordability. Other factors considered when buying a home were type of neighbourhood and type of home.

CMHC graphic.

Forty-two percent of first-time buyers and 31% of repeat buyers felt concerns or uncertainty about buying a home. Of those with concerns, the main ones were unforeseen costs, paying too much for their home and finding the right home. Twenty-eight percent of first-time buyers and 22% of repeat buyers incurred unexpected costs. Nineteen percent of home buyers were involved in a bidding war.

When it comes to gathering mortgage-related information, 19% of first-time buyers and 20% of repeat buyers use the website of a real estate agent or agency. Facebook is the top social media channel used among home buyers followed by YouTube.

The top information needs for home buyers were:

  • interest rates;
  • mortgage or house purchase fees;
  • steps involved in buying a house;
  • closing costs;
  • tools to manage their mortgage; and
  • how to face financial difficulties.

CMHC’s Homebuying Step by Step Guide and CREA’s Homebuyer’s Road Map can help you help your clients feel more confident about the homebuying process, address their information needs and provide added value.

The full results of the survey are available on CMHC’s website.

Do these survey results reflect your experience with your clients? Let us know in the Comments section below.

Carla joined CMHC in 1998 and worked in a variety of roles in both CMHC’s Prairies and Atlantic offices. In 2013, she moved to Ottawa to take on the role of Director of Community Development and was appointed Vice-President Affordable Housing in January 2015. Carla also took on the role of Diversity and Inclusion Champion for CMHC in 2016. In 2018, Carla moved to her current role in the Insurance Sector as Vice-President, Client Relationship Management. Carla is truly grateful for a career where she has the opportunity to make a difference in helping Canadians meet their housing needs.


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