We are starting the year and I would like to share with you what, in my opinion, we can expect to happen throughout 2018 in the real estate market. As always, they are predictions. See you in 2019 to see what will happen!
Navent will be sold.
Navent is an online classified company of properties and employment, its presence is strong in Latin America. In Mexico it has Inmuebles 24 and Bumeran. Although the latter was born as a unitary business in 1999, the following year it already operated in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico and Venezuela.
After an injection of capital in 2004, the business emerged as one of the most prominent in the field and its growth has been remarkable, but today it has much more competition. In Mexico it competes with Vivanuncios, Segundamano, Lamudi and Mercado Libre. In Brazil, its main rivals, Zap and Viva Real, merged in November to join forces and offer more complete and intelligent solutions to the real estate market of that nation.
2018 presents a more complex scenario and, like any investment fund, Navent has to think about offering good returns to its shareholders. In this sense, I see two alternatives: (1) the sale of all or part of its assets to a strategic actor, perhaps Ebay, Schibsted or Mercado Libre; (2) perhaps a public offer of sale (PVO) to gather more capital that could be used to finance its growth.
2. Effect of the recession on the economy in the real estate sector.
Several elements will come into play to determine the future in the national economy and its impact on the housing field, especially three: A) The increase in the interest rate of the Federal Reserve of the United States (FED) that involves the movement of other rates in our economy, including mortgages; a negative impact on weight; and, in general, a slowdown in the economy. B) The presidential elections and the repercussions that the victory of one or another political party would have. And C) the renegotiation of NAFTA that also has a direct impact on the cost of housing due to the price of the dollar.
3. Impact of presidential elections on housing.
In this issue we could see two scenarios: 1) The waiting period for elections that may not directly affect housing prices, but could reduce sales and lengthen the period of commercialization. 2) Depending on which candidate is chosen, we may see a significant reduction in foreign investment, including a reduction in sales due to the emergence of another controversy, such as last year’s ‘capturing surplus value’ in the Housing Law From Mexico City. We will have to be very aware of the handling of this issue by the candidates for the presidency.
4. AMPI and the other associations will be associated.
I believe that the proliferation of real estate associations makes the Mexican market fragile by dividing the dialogue and not concentrating it in a single voice. There are outstanding associations, such as the Mexican Association of Real Estate Professionals (AMPI), the Association of Professionals in Real Estate Marketing (APCI), the Association of Real Estate Developers (ADI) and many more. However, each one tries to defend the union from a different angle, while some focus on training, others are directed to political representation; certain associations seek to act from the regional level and others seek to have a national impact.
From my point of view, having different associations and different goals does not allow concentrating efforts in the same direction, which – coupled with the lack of a real estate license to practice the profession – means that agents do not really work as a guild United. In that sense, it is the function fulfilled by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) in the United States and that has more than one million members.
5. Keller Williams will grow much more.
Keller Williams has more than 90,000 real estate agents that operate in more than 700 market centers in the United States and Canada. It arrived in Mexico in September 2014 and opened its first market center in February 2015. It closed 2017 with more than 1,300 advisors and exceeded 25 market centers. In 2018, they have the goal of reaching 2,000 advisors and more than 40 market centers. In my opinion, this trend will continue and KW will reach its goals, they are treading very hard.
6. Ebay, Amazon and Google will expand their business in real estate.
The real estate market is one of the most relevant at a global level, such as that of food or health. Large companies, such as Google, have tried to venture into it; Amazon is getting involved in logistics issues (ships); while Ebay works hard to strengthen its vertical real estate with Vivanuncios and will continue in that direction during 2018 applying strategies in favor of the guild and the growth of its businesses.
7. The blockchain will enter the real estate market.
The blockchain will be an element of disruption in real estate. It is an incorruptible digital book of economic transactions that can be programmed to record not only financial transactions, but practically every operation that has value. Predictions of how the property industry could change include the launch of mortgage services using blockchain and the emergence of blockchain startups in the Prop Tech sector. We need to pay close attention to the block chain in 2018.
8. Real estate agents will continue to adopt digital media.
Although in Mexico the use of technology has not yet penetrated as much into the real estate market as it does in other first world countries, many advisers have realized the power of digital platforms. Now they are more aware and more open to change. They recognize that virtual tours can give the client a new perspective of the space that they could be willing to buy, they know the power of the image in the online listings, they warn the possibility of reaching the home search engines through social networks. Undoubtedly, that potential is already in your mind and platforms, such as Vivanucios, will provide you with tools and knowledge so that you can exploit and enjoy the advantages of the digital real estate era.
9. Novice agents will take advantage of technology to gain ground.
Although experience is usually a great advantage in the professional field, including real estate, technology today serves to level the playing field, something good for younger agents. With the help of an appropriate website, social networks, an appropriate CRM, apps and a strategic approach, an agent with little experience can achieve significant achievements in a few years. Technological advances complement -which does not replace- the job training of a real estate agent.
A good strategy and these tools can give advantage to veterans, at least, until they are willing to know and adapt to digital platforms.
10. Vivanuncios will continue to grow at an accelerated pace.
After an intense year in which Vivanuncios was placed as a leading player in real estate with events such as InCON, the first technology convention applied to the real estate sector, in 2018 the plan is to continue supporting the market through the improvement of its CRM to help agents measure their business pipeline, from lead to sale. In addition to that we will focus on driving the development sector.
This year we have many challenges to face and goals to fulfill. The first one is to recognize the best of the guild at the Real Estate Awards gala that will take place on March 15. You can not miss!