Companies in this industry buy, rent, or lease real estate, manage residential, commercial, and industrial properties, and provide other real estate related services, including appraisals. Major companies include CBRE Group, Long & Foster, Realogy, and Simon Property Group (all based in the US), as well as Mitsui Fudosan (Japan), Savills (UK), and Westfield Group (Australia).
Demand is driven by population growth, personal income, employment rates, interest rates, and access to capital. The profitability of individual companies depends on property values and demand, which are both impacted by general economic conditions. Real estate companies also rely on the supply of investment capital. Large companies have competitive advantages based on their financial resources and broad geographic reach. Small companies can compete effectively by focusing on local or regional markets. The US industry is highly fragmented: the top 50 companies account for about 20 percent of revenue.
Major products and services are property and investment management, brokerage services, leasing, valuations, and research. Clients include property owners, investors, home buyers, and renters. Real estate companies typically specialize in either residential or commercial properties.