2022 Swanepoel Trends: Tech Mergers, Buying Shifts to Move Markets

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Consolidation and reshuffling are having a big impact on the real estate industry. T3 Sixty, a real estate consulting and analytics firm, highlights consolidation as one of the big trends to watch in the new year. T3 Sixty released its 2022 Swanepoel Trends Report, a 220-page study of the top trends that are expected to shape the residential real estate brokerage industry over the next two years.

Among the trends highlighted in this year’s report:

Brokerage technology consolidation: More acquisitions are occurring among proptech firms to further product development, market penetration, and market expansion. T3 Sixty reports that between January 2019 and September 2021, the industry saw 34 real estate technology acquisitions. “Some acquisitions can make once-open technology proprietary, can change pricing and services and, in general, shift a product,” the report notes. “Others can introduce improvements, establish new, deeper integrations, and provide a more robust product.” Some consolidations are making technologies exclusive to certain brokerages.

The following is a chart of some acquisitions of brokerage and MLS technology in 2021 through September.

A chart from T3Sixty of some acquisitions of brokerage and MLS technology in 2021 through September

The Great Reshuffling: This pandemic-driven trend is influencing the housing market and accelerating some already long-developing trends, such as migration away from higher-priced, larger cities to lower-cost and more rural areas. The number of realtor.com® users searching for single-family homes in rural areas climbed 18.7% in June 2021 compared to June 2019—the highest increase of any area type during that period. Home prices have surged due to high demand in second-tier cities, like Boise, Idaho; Austin, Texas; Provo, Utah; Colorado Springs, Colorado; and Youngstown, Ohio.

Great Acceleration in business: The T3 Sixty report also notes high amounts of financing, rapid technology development, and new business models that emerged over the last decade have also helped drive the housing market to new heights more recently.

“Some of the hallmarks of this stage include an increasing concentration of production and market share among the nation’s largest real estate companies, the growth of financing from public markets and private equity as a major competitive factor, and the entrance and development of well-capitalized companies such as CoStar Group, which will be making bold and interesting moves,” the report says.

A screenshot of a T3Sixty chart explaining events that illustrated the acceleration