The Vanishing Real Estate Section

Photo Courtesy of Mileena & creative commons

There is a lot of conversation in the real estate industry about print advertising being overtaken by on-line alternatives.

There are surveys that show that most buyers start their search for homes on th Internet, and obviously it is better for the consumer to see more photos,in color, with amps and statistics,then it is to read a classified print ad.

When I was young, the real estate section of the Sunday paper was thick, bulging with ads and articles about neighborhoods, new construction,mortgages and more. And of course there were just tons of ads- and it was because of that concentration of ads that the real estate section existed.

Over the years, the ads became more expensive,covering smaller areas, and real estate professionals worked to find alternatives to print ads. And as that happened , the real estate section got thinner and thinner.

Even so, the real estate section is such a tradition that one would have thought that its demise lay far in the future. At least I would have thought that before I read this in the LA Times real estate blog.

In case you missed the announcement today in Real Estate, because of reductions in staff and space, the Sunday Real Estate section has printed its final edition.”

With some much information available to the consumer online from photos to maps, to street views, and demographics, people just don;t need to sit with the newspaper to get their information. And as the sources of news expand electronically as well, the competition for the attention of the consumer just became too great.

Obviously, the amount of real estate print advertising was no longer concentrated enough to warrant generating articles for the consumer. The Times will continue their real estate blog which will have the same quality writing that the paper is known for, but this may be the most obvious signpost to date that consumers want to find their real estate information on-line, and the providers of that information will need to be where the readers are if they wish to remain relevant.

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