Austin TX Real Estate - Hill Country Austin Lakeway Homes for Sale: Is the New 2009 Survey of Home Buyers and Home Sellers Accurate?

Is the New 2009 Survey of Home Buyers and Home Sellers Accurate?

2009 survey of home buyers and home sellersIs the new 2009 Survey of Home Buyers and Home Sellers accurate?  I was reading the summary of the results posted on Realty Times, and I'm fairly confused by some of the answers.

For example, how are they having the buyers distinguish between finding the house on the internet verse finding the house on the internet through their agent's website, or any agent's website?  That's one of the strong points of working with a Realtor is to have access to either their website with the most up to date listings, or receive listings via a saved search set up by the Realtor within the MLS to send out to the buyer.

When I, as the Realtor, send listings to my buyers and they click on the link and an internet browser window opens to view the home, is this buyer saying they saw the property on the internet or from their Realtor?  I think there needs to be more distinction because the numbers the survey is showing are weird.

36% of Buyers found the home they purchased using the internet with the exact same amount of Buyers finding the home they purchased using a real estate agent.  Again, how could buyers really say their agent didn't help them find the homes when most of the web-based searches are run by agents with MLS feeds?  Are the buyers really giving the Internet all that much credit now when the sites wouldn't exist without the cooperation of the Brokers and the Realtors?

When asked which sources of information were useful, 81% said real estate agent, however only 77% said the internet.
What did the remaining people think was useful?  Foreclosure Bus Tours?

Something else I found interesting is that the 2009 Survey of Home Buyers and Home Sellers said 10% of buyers found Open Houses to be useful, though statistics consistently show less than 1% of houses are sold at an open house.  Just another stat showing that buyers aren't really looking for open houses anymore, and that even the ones who think they're useful aren't out buying at Open Houses.

Maybe it was because they only had about a 7% return rate on the survey results, but the above stats don't seem very representative... but that's just my observant opinion for my market.

**Are You Packed Yet?** 

donna harris Realtor Austin TX blog

Donna Harris, REALTOR®
RE/MAX Austin Skyline

Austin TX Real Estate and the surrounding areas of Lakeway, Bee Cave, West Lake Hills, Cedar Park, Round Rock, Spicewood, Circle-C, Steiner Ranch, and everywhere in between... Hill Country Austin TX Real Estate and beyond. Whether you're buying or selling an Austin home, I'll be with you every step of the way. 

For real time Austin TX listings, click here.

** #1 Agent in my Office for all of 2008 **

Copyright© 2010 By Donna Harris, All Rights Reserved. You may re-blog with links back to this post.
* Is the New 2009 Survey of Home Buyers and Home Sellers Accurate? * was first published on

Comment balloon 6 commentsDonna Harris • January 11 2010 05:01PM


Those are some very good questions, that I bet will remain unanswered.  One always has to wonder about such surveys and polls.  The creator can usually skew the data to get the results they desire.

Posted by Janna Scharf, Coeur d'Alene Idaho Real Estate Expert (Keller Williams Realty Coeur d'Alene) about 10 years ago

Donna, I agree with Janna you have come up with some great questions and I also agree that they will probably remain unanswered.  By the way I love the way you put together the bottom of your post.  Mine is similar but I like yours better.

Posted by Marchel Peterson, Spring TX Real Estate E-Pro (Results Realty) about 10 years ago

Donna - Excellent point on who really runs the internet sites and how do you determine who to give the credit to.  I always think that stats are good for the creator of the stats.  I tend to think of it as a broader picture for my specific needs.  (Hey maybe that is my next blog post!)  Thanks for the inspiration!

Posted by Susan Brown (Keller Williams NE, Kingwood Texas (Humble & Atascocita too)) about 10 years ago

Janna, You  make a point, and with only 7% sending in their opinions, it's not much to go off of.

Marchel, Maybe we should try to answer them??  And thanks for the reminder that I need to change my copyright year to 2010!!

Susan, I love stats, but yes, you do have to look at the broader picture.

Posted by Donna Harris, Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator (Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - about 10 years ago


Great Post.  Surveys are only as good as who was surveyed and what questions were asked?

Thanks for sharing,

Matt Naumann

Posted by Matthew Naumann, Goose Creek, SC Real Estate Agent (Exit Realty Charleston Group) about 10 years ago

7% response rate is not much but .... if they have access to a public facing MLS (like Houston's) a potential buyer can access the same MLS data an agent has, without accessing the agent's own website, or the broker's site. They can also pick up the data feed from or any number of sites where the data has been exported.  An earlier poll said buyers are generally online what... 7 or 8 months "looking" in advance of purchasing, so thats a lot of time for them to tool around and find sites they feel give them "good" information without being actually on an agent or broker's site.

The "sources useful" of 81%-Agents and 77%-Internet tells me that the internet is narrowing the gap. People perceive they are finding "useful data" without having to contact an agent ... illuminating, as well as scary.

And the 10% finding open housese useful vs. 1% buying from an open house --- well, they may not be relating to the same instance. Most potential buyers like open houses because they can walk thru and see the features up front and in person --- it helps them make up their minds .. maybe another house had bigger rooms, maybe granite counters ...etc. whatever floats their boat. Does that mean they will buy THIS house, (from the open house) probably not, but they find it "useful" because it helps them make up their mind for the "next" house ... with the same number of bedrooms, or in the same school system or whatever is important criteria for them.

Posted by Judith Sinnard, The SMARTePLAN Lady (SMARTePLANS; Houston, Texas) about 10 years ago