Ottawa, ON, May 7, 2020
While staying home to help stop the spread of COVID-19, Canadians are spending more time looking at properties on REALTOR.ca, Canada’s No. 1 real estate platform*. During the week of March 9, visits to REALTOR.ca dropped by 30%; however, since April 12 traffic has crept back up by 14% and consumer inquiries to REALTORS® through the site rose by 25%—similar to levels during the same period last year. Despite the pandemic, REALTOR.ca has seen a 14% increase of visitors during the first quarter of 2020.
As COVID-19 is limiting how buyers can visit homes that interest them, REALTOR.ca makes it possible for Canadian REALTORS® to virtually showcase listings by integrating video and 3D tours from 10 of the most popular services. Since April 7, REALTORS® can also schedule and promote live stream open houses using popular platforms such as Facebook Live, Instagram Live, Zoom and YouTube.
“If there’s one thing 30-plus years in this business has taught me, it’s that as an industry we are early adopters of technology,” said Costa Poulopoulos, Chair of the Canadian Real Estate Association. “With restrictions on how we can continue to serve our clients, I’m proud that we’ve been able to add features for REALTORS® that allow them to continue to show homes to interested buyers.”
Usage data shows visitors to REALTOR.ca are increasingly using these features. There was a 50% increase in users sorting properties to show those with a “virtual tour” first. The new live stream feature is also attracting significant interest from consumers, with 18% of users visiting livestreaming events when promoted on REALTOR.ca.
“Since its launch on April 7, over 1,200 REALTORS® have conducted more than 5,000 live stream open houses,” said Patrick Pichette, CREA’s Vice-President, REALTOR.ca. “REALTORS® are also adding more video, 3D virtual tours and floor plans, allowing consumers access to homes, when business-as-usual is not possible.”
Since stay-at-home measures were put in place, consumers have had more time to consider what features are important in their ideal home. REALTOR.ca, Canada’s most popular real estate listings website, remains the best choice to find your new home.
* Source: Comscore, 2020