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Gen Zers Most Skeptical About Working With Agents, Professionals

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In an age where artificial intelligence can guide investment decisions and Americans can house hunt from the couch, it might be eye-raising to learn that consumers (well, most of them) actually want to work with humans when they make major life purchases.

A recent survey by Agentero, a platform for independent insurance agents based in Oakland, Calif., finds that 72% of consumers have worked with a real estate agent, 64% have worked with an insurance agent and 40% have worked with a financial services professional.

And more than 3 in 4 consumers who’ve worked with these agents or professionals would be repeat customers, though Gen Zers (ages 18 to 24) are the hardest to convince.

Gen Zers least likely to use agents, professionals in future

Whether it’s a real estate agent, insurance agent or financial services pro, Gen Zers are least inclined to work with them again. (Notably, they already have low percentages of people who have used them in the first place: 50%, 43% and 32%, respectively, for each type of agent.)

On the flip side, millennials (ages 25 to 40) are the most likely to lean on real estate agents and financial services pros again in the future. Meanwhile, baby boomers (ages 57 to 75) are most likely to be found flipping through their Rolodexes to give their insurance agent repeat business.

Interestingly, a higher percentage of consumers would have a second go-round with real estate agents should the need arise.

Real estate agent

  • Overall: 75% of consumers would use a real estate agent again in the future
  • Baby boomers: 75%
  • Gen Xers (ages 41 to 56): 75%
  • Millennials: 80%
  • Gen Zers: 71%

Insurance agent

  • Overall: 65% report they would use one again
  • Baby boomers: 72%
  • Gen Xers: 70%
  • Millennials: 64%
  • Gen Zers: 54%

Financial services professional

  • Overall: 58% report they would use one again
  • Baby boomers: 55%
  • Gen Xers: 58%
  • Millennials: 60%
  • Gen Zers: 57%
If you’re looking to find the best real estate agent near you, a good one could help you narrow your search and smoothen the process.

Agent, are you listening?

It makes sense that people working with a professional on major purchases or general life planning would want someone who listens in their corner — and overall, baby boomers, Gen Xers and millennials feel that their agents and professionals do listen. Gen Zers? Not so much.

Here’s the generational breakdown of whether consumers feel their intermediaries usually or always understand their needs:

Real estate agent

  • Baby boomers: 75%
  • Gen Xers: 75%
  • Millennials: 72%
  • Gen Zers: 55%

Insurance agent

  • Baby boomers: 85%
  • Gen Xers: 75%
  • Millennials: 74%
  • Gen Zers: 57%

Financial services professional

  • Baby boomers: 81%
  • Gen Xers: 75%
  • Millennials: 60%
  • Gen Zers: 50%

In agents we trust?

Consumers might believe these agents and professionals listen to them, but do they trust them? Baby boomers are the most trusting, while a greater percentage of Gen Zers tend to question their agents’ motives.

Let’s look at the percentage of respondents who usually or always trust their agents, by generation:

Real estate agent

  • Baby boomers: 72%
  • Gen Xers: 72%
  • Millennials: 68%
  • Gen Zers: 49%

Insurance agent

  • Baby boomers: 79%
  • Gen Xers: 67%
  • Millennials: 74%
  • Gen Zers: 50%

Financial services professional

  • Baby boomers: 80%
  • Gen Xers: 72%
  • Millennials: 55%
  • Gen Zers: 55%
But if you’re a potential homebuyer who prefers to work without a real estate agent, you can use a mortgage calculator to estimate your monthly mortgage payment. This could help you decide the price range you’re comfortable with.

Methodology: Agentero surveyed over 1,000 U.S. consumers ages 18 to 75 online on Oct. 4-6, 2021.

The generational breakdown is as follows:

  • Gen Zers: Ages 18 to 24
  • Millennials: Ages 25 to 40
  • Gen Xers: Ages 41 to 56
  • Baby boomers: Ages 57 to 75