To save costs and reduce reading time, many newspapers have begun to downsize the daily print edition, cut back pages and delete stock tables. They’ve also downsized editorial. Now, several have begun to fold in dedicated sections for various verticals, including business and real estate. (At the same time, other verticals continue to be developed, including food and health.)
The rollback of special sections is a flashback to a previous era, before newspapers realized they could get more targeted eyeballs by having special sections.
The Los Angeles Times is the latest to announce a cutback, killing off its dedicated real estate section on Sundays. In a note to readers, it says that “real estate coverage will continue to appear online throughout the week. Hot Property, Neighborly Advice and the occasional Pardon Our Dust remodeling tale will appear in print as part of the new Saturday Home section. Home of the Week, Southland home-price charts and other features will appear in Sunday Business. Real estate articles will appear in both sections.”
It is likely that the down market and the migration of the paper’s readers to its Internet site had a lot to do with the end of Sunday real estate. The real estate section has been a mainstay of the paper since 1901 and also has real historical significance: The paper began its history as a tout sheet for local real estate.
The Real Estate Industry Watch had the story first. In response to its post, “Northville Real Estate Agent” commented that “Part of me is shocked that the time has come where print advertising is coming to an end, but then another part of me is really not that shocked because I get more and more leads from the Internet than any other source for real estate leads.”