This is a list of 20 trends we see happening in real estate in 2020. However, keep in mind not all predictions will be correct. As investors we think critically about these trends as we adjust to the market.
1. The first half will be busy. The second half will be distracted by the Presidential Election.
2. Sellers will expand on home improvements before selling, often well beyond staging as buyers become less inclined to buy homes that need work…and wish to know all costs upfront and mortgage everything at low rates. Who has any cash left after closing for home improvements when pricing is at a premium?
3. Consumers will become more exposed to the harsh realities of ‘do-it-yourself’ and discount brokerage. They will also become more aware of misleading claims and the self-serving intentions of those wishing to eliminate real estate agents.
4. Mortgage rates will remain low but could come under pressure as rising energy costs and wages trigger inflation.
5. Awareness of real estate taxation disparities will grow and fuel political anger…and hopefully, action.
6. Urban migration will continue as walkability increases in desirability. However, suburban migration will expand due to affordability concerns, especially for millennials.
7. The shortage of affordable housing options will expand. Smaller, more affordable homes will have extreme competition from first-time buyers, investors, and down-sizing babyboomers.
8. The lower end of the market will see the most price increases due to limited inventory and high demand.
9. Very large homes that are not ultra-prime will need to be re-invented - or deeply discounted - to appeal to next-generation buyers.
10. BUY WHAT YOU USE: buyers will seek homes scaled to their needs, avoiding homes with rooms and features they are almost certain will never be used.
11. Amenities that save time will grow in popularity. Sharing amenities and services will grow in popularity, even in single-family neighborhoods. The need for guest cottages and apartments will grow to accommodate aging parents....or aging kids.
12. Maintenance exhaustion. The less maintenance, the better!
13. Real Estate Agents seeking a long future will become much more than transaction facilitators. Most of the best agents already perform multiple roles outside of the traditional brokerage role and these client relationships will deepen and grow.
14. Sustainability will become even more of a focus, reducing waste and being more environmentally responsible. Because we care about the future of our planet AND to reduce ownership costs.
15. Expect new/higher local taxes to offset rising wages and reduced gasoline usage and the taxes collected every time you fill up.
16. Smaller towns and suburbs will city-fy in their attempts to keep people from moving to more urban areas. Urban areas will attempt to create more of a village feel to prevent suburban flight.
17. Bigger, taller: expect zoning laws to be modified to allow more building density to bring down housing costs and reduce commutes.
18. Recovery Technology: as climate change continues, recovering from storms, floods, fires, etc will require technology to speed things up and minimize damage and disruption.
19. Expect sophisticated air and water filtration and other health-related home health-enhancers to grow in demand.
20. A US-China Trade deal may lower the cost of some building supplies offsetting rising labor costs. It will not be enough to bring down housing costs. The fear of cycles will prevent mass building, the only solution to housing affordability. And technology may step in to reduce building costs too by speeding construction up thereby reducing financing costs.