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Virtual real estate captures new generation of property buyers

A researcher from Rotorua’s Crown Research Institute, Scion, has completed a study on the modern homebuyer to discover how web surfing is affecting the real estate market.Consumer behaviour specialist Karen Bayne says homebuyers are spending more time on the Internet than ever before, which raises interesting questions about how to capture their attention.

Tuesday, August 22nd 2006, 12:00AM

by The Landlord

“In the past, people selling their homes were advised to bake scones and put on the coffee pot so potential buyers would feel instantly welcome, but that only works if they enter your home in the first place,” Bayne says.

Now that people can browse around thousands of properties without stepping foot out of their own home, presentation on the Internet is all-important.

“A growing number of homebuyers will purchase a property without even visiting it. This is a surprising development, because the Internet cannot convey the feel and the ambience of a home,” Bayne observes.

Bayne’s study, which was carried out as part of her masters degree in Commerce, found that people who search the net actually take longer to buy a house and visit more open homes on average than those who don’t.

“This is partly because they have access to far more options, but it is also because surfing the net has become a recreational activity for many people.”

Bayne says people aren’t just looking for a home on the net, they are looking for entertainment.

“Sites that are interactive and fun to surf are creating a new generation of virtual real estate shoppers,” she explains.

Bayne says people no longer view the web as a convenient source of information – buyers want to lose themselves in the browsing experience.

“Smart real estate companies respond to this opportunity by making their sites interactive and entertaining.”

« Property investors refocus on cash flowSimes $70 million property portfolio on market »

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Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
AIA 4.55 ▼2.29 ▼2.59 ▼2.65
ANZ 4.44 2.89 3.25 3.39
ANZ Special - 2.29 2.69 2.79
ASB Bank 4.45 2.29 2.59 2.65
Bluestone 3.49 3.34 2.99 3.34
BNZ - Classic - 2.29 2.59 2.79
BNZ - Mortgage One 5.15 - - -
BNZ - Rapid Repay 4.60 - - -
BNZ - Std, FlyBuys 4.55 2.89 3.19 3.39
BNZ - TotalMoney 4.55 - - -
CFML Loans 4.95 - - -
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
China Construction Bank 4.49 4.70 4.80 4.95
China Construction Bank Special - 2.65 2.65 2.80
Credit Union Auckland 5.45 - - -
Credit Union Baywide 5.65 3.95 3.85 -
Credit Union South 5.65 3.95 3.85 -
First Credit Union Special 5.85 2.95 3.45 -
Heartland Bank - Online 2.50 1.99 2.35 2.45
Heretaunga Building Society 4.99 3.50 3.40 -
HSBC Premier 4.49 2.25 2.35 2.65
HSBC Premier LVR > 80% - - - -
HSBC Special - 1.99 - -
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
ICBC 3.69 2.25 2.35 2.65
Kainga Ora 4.43 2.79 3.04 3.13
Kainga Ora - First Home Buyer Special - 2.25 - -
Kiwibank 3.40 3.20 3.50 3.50
Kiwibank - Offset 3.40 - - -
Kiwibank Special 3.40 2.35 2.65 2.65
Liberty 5.69 - - -
Nelson Building Society 4.95 3.20 3.24 -
Pepper Essential 4.79 - - -
Resimac 3.39 3.35 2.99 3.35
SBS Bank 4.54 2.79 2.79 3.15
Lender Flt 1yr 2yr 3yr
SBS Bank Special - 2.29 2.29 2.65
Select Home Loans 3.49 3.34 2.99 3.34
The Co-operative Bank - First Home Special - 2.09 - -
The Co-operative Bank - Owner Occ 4.40 2.29 2.59 2.79
The Co-operative Bank - Standard 4.40 2.79 3.09 3.29
TSB Bank 5.34 3.09 3.29 3.45
TSB Special 4.54 2.29 2.49 2.65
Wairarapa Building Society 4.99 3.55 3.49 -
Westpac 4.59 3.09 3.29 3.39
Westpac - Offset 4.59 - - -
Westpac Special - 2.29 2.69 2.79
Median 4.55 2.79 2.99 2.80

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