As 2022 draws to a close, industry experts are nervous about the housing market for 2023. Mortgage rates continue to climb, and home sales and prices are either stagnant or regressing, which has caused a lot of uncertainty. This tension is felt by homeowners, prospective sellers and buyers, and real estate professionals.
A recent Bankrate assessment puts the average 30-year fixed-mortgage rate is 7.04 percent. Furthermore, previously owned homes are selling at the slowest pace in a decade. This week we’re fortunate enough to have one of the nation’s top experts offering more profound insight into the market and possible strategies heading into 2023. Mark Johnson is the CEO of JPAR® - Real Estate, America’s #1 fastest-growing 100% commission brokerage, and one of the ten hottest U.S. franchises.
Here’s a Q&A with the industry guru we had last week. We know agents and other stakeholders will find his suggestions helpful.
RealtyBizNews: In 2021, JPAR® nationwide closed almost 26,000 deals. So how do the numbers look for this year? Do you expect your company’s dramatic expansion to continue into 2023?
Mark Johnson: As a large broker and brand, our numbers will generally mirror the markets we compete in. Regarding growth and the current real estate market, it is evolving as it always does. Many active agents have never experienced a down market or interest rates above 5%, so the market dynamics will be a significant challenge for some, but as an organization, we take proactive steps to help all of our sales professionals navigate the changing market.
We look at the real estate transaction from A to Z and map out ways to put more money in our brokers’ and agents’ pockets. We have created a commission model that recreates a full-service experience at a flat-fee, capped rate. Additionally, the +JPAR® model is a big part of our growth, as it allows existing brokers/owners in the marketplace to capitalize on our low-cost model and resources while keeping and leveraging their established brands.
RealtyBizNews: The economy has taken a downturn. Do you see the ensuing competitiveness as a hurdle or as an opportunity? Please briefly explain.
Mark Johnson: It’s just my nature to see all challenges as an opportunity. I’ve been through many cycles in my real estate career and have learned by focusing on the agent’s success will drive growth opportunities. Our unique value proposition and offerings - like JPAR® Sure Sale - enable our associates to have a more consultative approach with consumers: buy or sell traditionally; SWAP the home as easily as trading a car or an instant offer - these innovative JPAR® tools have fueled our talent attraction efforts.
RealtyBizNews: Over the past few months, we’ve been looking for the best digital marketers among real estate agents. It’s meaningful to mention here that JPAR® maintains a cutting-edge social presence. How important are social channels, in your opinion?
Mark Johnson: Real estate is a relational business, and social media has a relational competence. Social media is a factor in today’s business strategy. However, it does not replace the fundamental connections required to drive a thriving real estate practice. It’s easy for someone to think they can hide behind the computer. That’s a formula for disaster in your business. Selling a professional service is very different than selling a tangible product, and the real estate professionals that understand that difference are winning.
RealtyBizNews: Why do you think more agencies don’t take advantage of the entire digital toolbox to get leads and make sales?
Mark Johnson: Lack of innovation, status quo, who knows. I’ve learned that a thriving business turns on innovation and marketing. Our associates, who are creating consistent leads that lead to consistent appointments, are winning, and those that don’t are struggling. At JPAR® - Real Estate, we offer many innovative tools and approaches that enable a consistent lead flow and lead conversion.
RealtyBizNews: On “Success Superstars,” you offer insightful advice to help other agents. What would it be if you could suggest only one key to success?
Mark Johnson: The winners are the doers. We have produced nearly 300 episodes of our agent-focused “ Success Superstars” program, and a clear theme has presented itself: taking action now. Perfection is the enemy of success, and those who take action - progress over perfection - with a mindset of continuous improvement are winning. Perfection is not a standard. Progress is.