Charting the real estate landscape

by Timothy Inklebarger

In today’s market, real estate professionals face many of the same hurdles we’ve seen over the past two years — inventory shortages, bidding wars, buyers and sellers reluctant to jump into the market and the continuing uncertainty driven by the COVID pandemic. But that’s not stopping brokers, agents and others in the industry from planning for another record-breaking year.

We start the year off with an overview of the market from brokers working in the trenches. Check out our cover story to get their view of the Chicagoland market. Top agents at Baird & Warner, Jameson Sotheby’s International Realty and Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Chicago give us their take on the strengths and weaknesses in Chicagoland real estate. Which areas are the hottest? What impact could rising interest rates have on the market? How have buyer preferences changed? We have the answers.

As brokerages across the metro area gear up for growth, we take a closer look in our Real Issues feature, which explores the decision by some brokerages to expand through purchases of brokerages while others are taking the franchising route. Some brokerages, such as Chicago-based @properties, are doing both. We speak with a number of top real estate executives across the country to hear more about their expansion models, and we have an exclusive interview with @properties co-founder and co-CEO Thad Wong, who made headlines in November with the purchase of Christie’s International Real Estate.

This issue also looks forward with an outlook from incoming National Association of REALTORS® President Leslie Rouda Smith, and our monthly Top Coach column gives some pointers on how and why agent etiquette matters. As always, we want to hear from you to get your take on the state of the real estate market. Let us know what we’re missing by emailing Tim.Inklebarger@agentpublishing.com.

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