From New York Times reports they say from Jan 2003 to Mar 2006 mortgage companies, homebuilders and contractors added 1.3 million jobs to the economy or about 23 percent of all jobs created. From that point on housing category jobs have lost 383,000 jobs while the rest of the economy added nearly 3 million jobs.
One can only imagine that the bloodletting in the housing industry is just beginning. From the real estate agent standpoint it looks like a thinning of the herd is about to take place. For those agents serious about their livelihood and who have a passion for the business, they need staying power. Ideas in this area:
- veteran agents can work their referrals harder and probably increase share
- newer agents can "survive" with a spouse's income or a counter-cyclical parallel income stream
- all agents who will remain can hone their skills with more education and sharpening their contact with their sphere by cleaning up their databases and focusing on helpful marketing ideas to clients and prospects
- expense control will have to be closely monitored and adjusted by agents and brokers alike. What really is the return on your investment?
Like a forest fire clearing way for new growth this thinning process is probably overall good for the industry. Those that love the field of real estate will still be around when the trough of the downturn turns upward again. They are too smart to be pushed aside. They will adjust their business models and find a way to make it work. They've always been the type to make things happen and not let things happen to them.