Real Estate Services

We see three dominant trends that are shaping the U.S. residential housing market. First, slow unit growth of new/existing home sales driven by higher rates, student debt inhibiting first-time buyers, and low levels of home equity limiting the trade-up market. Second, the consolidation of mortgage lending driven by the economic recession and the government’s response to it. Third, lenders giving larger share of wallet to fewer vendors and outsourcing more functions surrounding mortgage underwriting to third parties in response to regulatory factors. To win in this market, we think real estate services providers will need to run a tight operation to drive high incremental margins from the limited demand curve they face, drive revenue growth with share taking via organic cross sales or M&A to offer more services, and offering centralized/bundled products.

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