RateMyAgent analysed the data behind the 331,029 property sales in Australia in 2018, and the 36,208 agents that made them happen.
We specifically looked at the names of the agents, and the 362 most common ones (208 male and 154 female).
We also made use of RateMyAgent’s unique Price Expectation data, with vendors indicating whether their sale price was above, below, or in-line with their expectations.
The results are fascinating.
First, the results are fun. Michael and Michelle are the most common names of agents, while comparing 2018 with 2017 shows that Jake is the fastest growing agent name, Amy and Bill are rapidly in decline and Maureen is an endangered species.
Looking more competitively, agents named Lucas sell the most properties on average in Australia (25 on average), and agents named Alexander achieve the highest average sale price at over $1.5m. Agents named Cheryl have the happiest customers, with 61.5% of sales results at prices exceeding the vendor expectations. How did you do?
The results also provide an insight into gender in real estate;
- With a gender split of 70:30 men to women, and many more female agents working part-time, we see male names are more heavily represented on the table of which names sell the most property, but behind the averages there are still plenty of female agents posting big numbers.
- The genders are fairly evenly represented when looking at which names are achieving higher sale prices (with women’s names taking 6 of the top 14 rankings); and which names are achieving highest customer satisfaction (women’s names take 8 of the top 16 rankings).
- Female agents seem to be weathering the market downturn better; with sales per female agent shrinking just 7% in 2018, compared with 12% for males.
Finally, the results show, for the first time ever, a fascinating insight into how an agents name makes a difference to sales performance.
- Agents with longer names consistently achieve better average sales value; with each additional letter adding an estimated $32,620 to average prices
- Taking this further, we examined 65 pairs of agent names (variations on the same name, but longer and shorter versions e.g. Alexander vs Alex) and in 88% of the cases the variant with the longer name had higher average sales value – and the differences are significant.
- Vendor happiness with sales prices seems to work differently. We found home seller’s satisfaction was less impacted by name length; apart from those with very short names (with less satisfied vendors) and very long names (who have very satisfied vendors).
Do read on. We hope you enjoy the report, whatever your name is.
– Mark Armstrong.
1. The biggest names in real estate
Top 10 male / top 10 female names in Australian real estate
Comparing 2017 data to 2018 we can see the fasting growing and fastest shrinking names in real estate (minimum qualification 50 names).
Michael is the most popular name, at the other end of the scale, there are some endangered species, with Maureen and Irene disappearing from the industry fastest.
Note: Minimum qualification 20 names in 2017.
2. The biggest engines
- 25 agents make it into a club of agents selling more than 20 properties annually
- Agents named Lucas lead the pack with an average of 25 sales.
- The average number of properties sold by agents in Australia is 14
- 2 females are represented in the 20+ Sales Club
3. The million dollar club
- 14 agents average over $1m on their average sale price.
- Agents named Alexander lead the field with an average sale price in excess of $1.5m
- 5 females are represented. Comparing data with the ‘20+ Sales Club’, shows female agents are selling higher value but lower volumes in the market.
4. Happiest customers
- Measured by percentage of an agent’s customers that report achieving an above average price expectation from their property sale.
The 50% club
- The above expectation average is 33.1%, but these agents have more than 50% of their vendors reporting they achieve a sale price above their expectations.
- Cheryl leads with the happiest customers.
- Female agents are equally represented in the Top 8 and have 8 of the top 16 positions.
Just following this elite group;
5. Why names matter
- The length of an agent’s name is strongly correlated with the average sale price they achieve.
- The average length of name for an agent is 5.23 letters
- Beyond this we analysed 65 pairs of agent names. Pairs had variants on same name, just with different lengths.
- In 57 out of 65 pairs (88%), the variant with the longer name had higher average sales value.
- The premium achieved by the agent with the longer name was significant, on average a 21% difference
- While there are some exceptions (for example Liz and Elizabeth rank the same) the correlation is evident in almost 9 out of 10 instances
- To illustrate this, 5 pairs of names with the biggest difference between the longer and shorter versions of a name are shown below. Full data available on request.
- Why do we see this correlation?
- We believe that it partly reflects agents tailoring their image to the market they serve.
- Put simpler, wealthy vendors are looking for a more serious, professional image, so “real” names are preferred over nicknames for those selling high value properties.
- But that’s not the whole story. Diving further into the data, we find that;
Perhaps a longer name is more eye catching? Perhaps the value of a name is also determined on a square foot basis?
5. The ‘Name Happiness Curve’
- Vendor happiness is measured by RateMyAgent’s unique Price Expectation data. We ask vendors whether the sale price achieved was above, below or in line with their expectations.
- Cross referencing Price Expectation with agent names shows that in contrast to price levels, vendor happiness is rarely impacted by agent name length. The exceptions to this rule are two letter names (for example, “Di”) with lower than average Vendor Happiness, and eleven letter names (notably, “Christopher”), who achieve exceptionally high vendor happiness.
- We also did a comparison of vendor happiness levels for our 65 “name pairs”, and found that although agents with shorter names achieved lower sales prices; their vendors were more satisfied in just over half of the comparisons (33 of 65 pairs).
Want more data-filled goodness? Check these out:
Aussie home sellers price expectation report – November 2018
Aussie home sellers price expectation report – February 2019
The 2019 Agent of the Year Award winners