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Inside Info: Home Sales Are Rebounding. Radio Is Best Way to Reach Prospective Buyers.

After three down months caused by the coronavirus pandemic, the housing market is rebounding. Sales of existing homes jumped nearly 21% in June compared with May for the largest monthly gain since the National Association of Realtors began tracking sales in 1968. “The housing market is hot – red hot – based on the data and the anecdotal prevalence of multiple offers," says Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors. And translates into a great opportunity for radio,” says Jeff Stein, Market Manager for The Media Audit.

Data from the research firm shows 83% of people planning to buy a home listen to radio. The number rises to 86% of people who already own a home. “On average, prospective home purchasers spend nearly two and three-fourths hours a day listening to radio and for prospective purchasers who are current home owners, listening duration rises to nearly three hours a day,” Stein says. “In short, planned home buyers spend more time with radio than with any other medium.”

According to an Aug. 27 story in The Wall Street Journal, Millennials are helping drive the housing market rebound. Long viewed as perpetual renters reluctant or unable to buy, Millennials surpassed 50% of new home loans last year. “Millennials are the largest generational demographic now,” Stein notes. “Last year they edged ahead of Boomers. And they are nearly 60% more likely to plan to buy a home – much higher than any other generational group.”

The good news for radio sales teams, per The Media Audit, is Millennials are heavy radio listeners.

The Media Audit online study across 57 markets shows the importance of digital listening. Almost nine in ten Millennials (88%) stream audio. One third of Millennials own at least one smart speaker and another 37% plan to purchase one in the next year.

“Based on our study, stations might use smart speakers as a fun incentive for real estate firms to give to prospective purchasers, since smart speakers are so popular with Millennials,” Stein suggests. Alexa is the most popular smart speaker but for Millennials, Google is disproportionately strong” says Stein.

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