The internet can be a wonderful tool to help find a new home, or it can be a frustrating time-waster. It all depends on how you use it.
Let’s first take a look at the upside of using the Web when home shopping.
A good REALTOR® can point you to websites and specific web pages where you can:
• See pictures of homes available, including in some cases individual rooms and other property features.
• Get property details, such as lot size, number of bedrooms, square footage, and other features.
• Find information on the neighborhood and surrounding area, such as the location of schools, parks and public transit.
• Take a “virtual tour” (when available), which allows you to view a home on your computer almost as if you were walking through it in real life.
Previewing specific homes online can save you a lot of time. You can quickly get a sense for whether or not a property meets your basic criteria before traveling to see it in person.
But there is a downside to relying too much on the internet to preview homes. Pictures and descriptions on the internet don’t always tell the whole story. It’s entirely possible for a home to look unappealing to you on a website, yet turn out to be the perfect home when you actually go to see it. (Imagine not seeing it and missing out on that potential dream home.)
In addition, even these days, some homes are listed and sold so fast that they never make it to the internet. So if you rely too much on websites to find homes, you might miss out on opportunities.
The solution? Work with a REALTOR® who knows how to find homes on the market that are a good match for you, and knows how to make the entire home buying process go quickly and smoothly.