What are the UK housing market forecasts for 2022?
According to ‘Rightmove’, strong buyer demand will carry into the new year, but the ‘frenzied’ market of Covid pandemic is set to ease as more owners look to sell.
The property website said that following a “frenzied” 18 months, the market was heading for a less frantic period, with a more even balance between buyers and sellers as more homes are put up for sale, and higher interest rates take some of the heat out of buyer demand.
On the one hand, Rightmove says that the market could ease up a little on first-time buyers. On the other hand, it predicted that gross mortgage lending would peak this year at £316bn – up 31% in 2020 – then fall back to £281bn in 2022 before increasing to £313bn in 2023.
Last year, the UK introduced a new model for Shared Ownership, which is set to help more people onto the property ladder by vastly reducing the minimum initial share and launching a consultation to ensure new homes deliver the accessibility that families need.
The minimum share a buyer can purchase of a Shared Ownership home is 25% in its current form. However, the government’s new model for the scheme will see this lowered to 10%.
This decrease will help to dramatically reduce deposit levels, making homeownership more accessible to many hopeful first time buyers – particularly at developments in London where property values are highest, and deposits have been pushed up over the past few years.
If the real estate market is so fluctuating, there is a constant: online research’s role in purchasing a house is vital and speaking of that, did you know that 92% of buyers start the process by relying on the Internet?
The role of digital
Digital marketing is a vital part of your real estate business, and that’s good news. However, handling real estate marketing in this digital age can be daunting, as everything changes by the minute. If you want to maintain a competitive edge, evolving with the current times and adapting your marketing strategies to generate leads is a must.
Having a successful digital marketing strategy is the way to ensure your listings get the desired traffic, connecting you with potential clients.
To help you better navigate buying a home in the year ahead, we’ve listed the prominent trends that analysts expect will shape the real estate market.
Trend #1: be authentic, non-social media
Having a solid social media presence is essential, but it’s not enough. People interested in buying a home need to work with realtors they can trust, and that’s why posting regularly and responding to comments and questions is the best way. On the contrary, behaving like a salesperson on social media can lead to distrust.
In addition, adding photos and video tours is helpful, provided they are realistic.
Trend #2: optimise your website
Did you know that there is a high probability of bounce if a page takes more than 4 seconds to load? If you are working in the property marketing area, your website is your first tool to help you do better deals – and that’s why it should be user-friendly, fast, and mobile-responsive.
Tracking conversions is essential. Examples of them can be signing up for email, downloading a brochure, following up on social media, booking an appointment with an agent, requesting a call-back, purchasing something.
A good property marketing site should be created in an SEO friendly way (using keywords, metatags, inbound links, good index, and be mobile friendly).
Images must be high quality. In particular if they are used to showcase the best the area has to offer. A good example is beautiful photos of local town landmarks and familiar sites. A site should be easy to navigate, incorporate buyer-focused content, connected to email marketing, and make use of website analytics like Google Analytics so that you can monitor conversions.
Trend #3: integrate influencer marketing
Times have changed and, even though you may think that influencer marketing doesn’t fit with real estate, that would be a gross mistake.
Building a relationship with potential clients is based on trust, so what better way to show them your dedication than with a niche influencer campaign?
Influencers can usually be divided into three categories: mega-influencers (celebrities), macro-influencers (well-known), and micro-influencers (niche). How to determine which influencer would be right for you? It would help if you defined your target audience. Are you looking to attract families and professionals? Perhaps millennials? People tend to follow influencers that represent the lifestyle they hope to achieve.
Many real estate brands choose a variety of influencers to maximize their reach on different platforms. The best influencer is the one that better fits your audience.
Below are some of the accounts you should know about.
Sarah Beeny: broadcaster and property developer Sarah Beeny has hosted numerous TV shows since the launch of Property Ladder in the early 2000s – her most recent show, Sarah Beeny’s New Life in the Country, documents the ups and downs of her family’s move to a self-built dream home in Somerset. Follow her on Twitter – and there’s a podcast too.
Vanessa Warwick: if you are interested in property investment or working in lettings, she is the right influencer for you. Vanessa may be an ex-MTV presenter, but she has since built a sterling reputation as a professional landlord, property consultant/speaker and founder of Property Tribes – the UK’s number 1 landlord/property community. Follow Vanessa at @4_walls.
Trend #4: email marketing is always a good idea
Email marketing is still one of the most effective ways to get in front of your audience and convey your message. A recent study showed that real estate companies that use email marketing could expect to see a 26% conversion rate, guaranteeing them an ROI that other forms of real estate marketing cannot compete with.
Building an email list is also a credible way of growing their database and having a larger warm audience that is easier to convert over time. In addition, unlike other forms of communication like social media or blogs, with emails, you have complete control over the communication channel analytics, and you can segment your audience.
An excellent digital marketing strategy ensures that realtors get good leads and have a strong follow-up process to nurture and convert those leads with ease.
Alternatively, you can use LinkedIn to generate leads, allowing yourself to capture leads via paid ads using pre-filled forms with member profile data. With this tool, you have the chance to hit a new market and leverage the power of mobile advertising, making it as simple as possible for your prospect to click on your ad and submit their information.
Whatever platform you choose, providing valuable content, such as additional information and (if possible) concrete sales and deals, is the key to making your follow-up worthy.
Trend #5: virtual video tours
The use of video tours has grown exponentially during the pandemic for apparent reasons, but now it’s here to stay. This preview is helpful for both real estate agents and customers, as it enables the buyers to be more aware of the house they are going to visit. Agents now understand the efficacy of real estate video marketing. This trend is likely to continue as 2022 rolls in.
The good news? Contrary to the expectations, it needn’t be an expensive option. Thanks to mobile phones, taking videos of a property should become second nature to agents when they view the property.
Trend #6: Google Ads
Google Ads are an essential tool for property marketeers. Thanks to targeting and localising, you can create a funnel of people interested in what you are offering and adapt your marketing step by step, simply monitoring the results.
As we saw, on the one hand building a solid digital marketing strategy in 2022 is complicated and involves many channels. On the other hand, if you have not set-up a compelling communication plan, that’s definitely the right time to do it.
Just a last tip: remember that buyers in 2022 are super-informed. They often simultaneously use search engines, Youtube, social networks, forums, and mobile apps. Trying to cheat them just doesn’t work.
Be honest, keep them informed, and show what you have in the best possible light.
If you want a consultancy about your property marketing strategy, feel free to get in touch https://shareable.co.uk/contact