The Internet has changed the way many of us live our lives, and the process of buying a home is no exception. Buyers previously had to visit a real estate office and thumb through a large book of homes to find out what’s on the market. These days, everything's instantly updated online.
Purchasers have fun at first plugging in home preferences and browsing through a variety of homes. It soon gets pretty frustrating though as subsequent searches force you to sift through homes you’ve already looked at just to discover the latest ones that have hit the market. By the time you finally find your perfect home online, it could be too late.
Some agents now offer a service that emails you properties which match your criteria so you won’t miss out on your dream home. Although there’s no obligation, it’s best to stick with one agent in order to build a strong relationship so they'll be better able to understand your needs. Dealing with more than one agent is unnecessary and causes confusion as agents have access to all the same homes.
It’s important to get acquainted with the market so you’ll be confident enough to move quickly when your dream home finally comes along. You’ll want to provide your agent with a detailed list of criteria that clearly specifies your needs and wants -- for example:
What style of home do you prefer?
Are the schools in the area important to you?
What’s more important: the type of home or the location?
What are the minimum number of bedrooms and bathrooms?
Does the house have to be in ‘move in’ condition or are you prepared to fix it up?
It’s important to establish a strong line of communication with your agent so they’ll be in tune with your likes and dislikes. Be sure to provide feedback when you receive property updates as it'll help your agent better understand your preferences. It’s a gut wrenching feeling to miss out on a dream home due to miscommunication so make sure you're on the same page.
Finding the perfect home isn't always easy but the right system and clear communication will make it much more enjoyable! If you know of someone who's house hunting, have them drop me a line so I can send them full updates of homes that match their criteria as soon as they hit the market! Instead of playing the frustrating game of telephone tag, they'll be able to sit back and enjoy the process.