If you're not working with Hispanic clients, you're missing a huge market, as they remain one of the fastest growing homebuying demographics.
However, if you're not Hispanic yourself, there are a few things you might want to know before you dive in. Below are some tips from the top two winners of NAHREP's Top 250 award, Mario Negron, Owner/Broker Associate, RE/MAX Prestige in Houston, Texas, and Claudia Restrepo, of Keller Williams Realty The Legacy Group in Spokane, Wash.
Don't forget to listen. “The biggest mistake agents make when working with Hispanic clients is not paying attention,” says Negron. For instance, Negron points out that most Hispanic clients are family driven, and this impacts their choice in home location. “We congregate closer to family, relatives. That's where most agents drop the ball. They show homes far away because they don't realize what the clients want.”
Focus even further relationship-building. Most agents work to build their relationships with their clients, but when working with the Hispanic demographic, it's even more important. “Hispanics are very relationship oriented,” explains Restrepo. “We want to know who we are doing business with before we actually start working with someone.” Be sure to go the extra mile to connect, be present, and show you care not only about making a sale, but about the happiness and well-being of your client.
Pay attention to unique financial needs. Hispanic homeowners are less likely to want to finance a large sum. “We are not used to borrowing a large amount of money for a long period of time to own a home,” explains Restrepo. “We want to pay it off as soon as possible. Those little details make the experience different from any other buyers.”
Expect (and respect) a larger family unit. You may be used to working with married teams of two, but Hispanic families tend to include extended family members in their core unit. This could mean that not only are Grandma and Grandpa coming along on your listing tours, but they are going to be involved with their family's decision-making process, so be sure to address and include them, too.
Real estate professionals should understand the idiosyncrasies of Hispanic culture. By doing so, the transaction will be more successful for everyone involved.