The latest initiative aims to educate the public that without buyers' agents, historically underserved and underrepresented communities are at risk of further distancing themselves from the American Dream of homeownership

SANTA CLARA, Calif., June 17, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- The homebuying process is complex, but for individuals in underrepresented communities the hurdles can be even more daunting. That's why Realtor.com® is extending the reach of its highly successful buyer representation campaign with the launch of a new initiative promoting the benefits of buyer's agents for individuals in historically underserved and underrepresented communities, including BIPOC, AANHPI, Hispanic, LGBTQ+, first-time, Veteran, and lower-income buyers.

Low-income earners are 22% more likely to be denied a loan1, LGBTQ+ are 25% less likely to own a home compared to all Americans2, one in four Hispanic individuals complete the homebuying process entirely in Spanish3, seven in 10 Veterans are unaware they qualify for a zero-down home loan4, and the gap between Black and White homeownership is worse today than in 1968 when the Fair Housing Act was passed5. If the commission settlements lead to increased transaction costs or reduced access to buyer representation, it could further limit the ability of these groups to purchase homes and exacerbate existing inequalities in homeownership.

With the campaign, Realtor.com® is highlighting the indispensable role buyer's agents can play in overcoming specific challenges faced by these individuals during the home buying process. Sellers have their own agent looking out for them, and buyers need and deserve the same support and protection. With access to and a better understanding of how a buyer's agent can help, consumers can make more informed decisions during the home buying process.

"Buyer's agents provide essential expertise and support in the biggest financial transaction of people's lives. This is especially true for first-time and underrepresented buyers with limited resources or knowledge of the process. However, if the commission settlements increase upfront costs or reduce access to buyer agency it could make homeownership less affordable to the very people who need the most help," said Realtor.com® CMO Mickey Neuberger. "During June's Homeownership Month, we urge the industry to join us in being a champion for consumers, raising awareness and advocating for the advantages of buyer representation for all home buyers, but particularly for first-time buyers and individuals in underrepresented communities. Faced with the biggest real estate affordability crisis in recent history, the last thing we should do is make it even harder for these individuals to access a chance at generational wealth."

Since its launch on April 18, Realtor.com®'s buyer agency campaign has been very successful with consumers and the industry, garnering widespread support and social shares from prominent thought leaders and leading real estate companies, including Zillow and Compass. The campaign has drawn nearly 40 million impressions and 18,000 agent toolkit downloads.

Prominent real estate organizations join the movement
As part of the campaign, several prominent real estate organizations are signing on to a joint letter in support of buyer agency, which will be published in the Wall Street Journal, New York Post and Washington Post throughout the next month. Digital campaign ads will also appear on the Wall Street Journal and New York Post and be shared widely across trade and social media. The supporting organizations include the Asian Real Estate Association of America, Homeownership Council of America, LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance, National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals, National Association of Real Estate Brokers, and Veterans United Home Loans. 

"The large majority of net new homeowners over the next twenty years are expected to be from Hispanic and other diverse communities. The overall health and well-being of America's housing economy will rely on these consumers having access to competent buyer's agent representation to help them navigate through a complex and challenging home purchase process," said Gary Acosta, NAHREP CEO and co-founder.

111 reasons why buyer's agents matter
Additionally, Realtor.com® is launching an updated version of "Here's 111 things to do, or do 1 thing. Find a buyer's agent" campaign creative that highlights the benefits for underserved and represented communities with customized messages for each group. A buyer agent toolkit, to be updated with the latest campaign creative, includes co-branded assets, such as print, digital and social ads for sharing. Realtor.com® is once again encouraging industry stakeholders to join the effort and spread awareness and support.

Data sources: 1. Urban Institute, 2023 Rising Interest Rates Put the Brakes on the Mortgage Market for Borrowers with Low Incomes, 2019–22 Home Mortgage Disclosure Act data; 2. LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance, May 2023 3rd Annual LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance Report; 3. NAHREP 2022 Glossary of Real Estate Industry Terms; 4. Based on a national survey of 300 respondents, split evenly between active duty service members and Veterans, conducted in October 2023 by data and analytics firm Sparketing on behalf of Mortgage Research Center, LLC.  VeteransUnited.com | 1-800-884-5560 | 550 Veterans Dr, Columbia, MO 65201 NMLS #1907 | Not a Govt. Agency | Equal Housing Opportunity. Licensed in all 50 states. Licensed Mortgage Banker – NYS Department of Financial Services.

About Realtor.com®
Realtor.com® is an open real estate marketplace built for everyone. Realtor.com® pioneered the world of digital real estate more than 25 years ago. Today, through its website and mobile apps, Realtor.com® is a trusted guide for consumers, empowering more people to find their way home by breaking down barriers, helping them make the right connections, and creating confidence through expert insights and guidance. For professionals, Realtor.com® is a trusted partner for business growth, offering consumer connections and branding solutions that help them succeed in today's on-demand world. Realtor.com® is operated by News Corp [Nasdaq: NWS, NWSA] [ASX: NWS, NWSLV] subsidiary Move, Inc. For more information, visit Realtor.com®.

Media Contact
Sara Wiskerchen, sara.wiskerchen@realtor.com

 

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SOURCE Realtor.com

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