The problem with House Hunting Sites Sunday, April 17, 2016
Everyone has looked online for houses at one point or another. Maybe just out of curiosity to see what your neighbors home sold for, or to get that "estimate" of what your house might be worth. Or maybe, you have looked for a home to buy. There are endless websites to search for houses in endless price ranges and in endless communities. How can this be a bad thing you ask? The fact all of this information is free and readily available isn't bad, it is truly fantastic to empower house hunters to do things that required a Realtor to do in decades past. The problem I have with this information is that it is often not verified or up to date. While working with clients, most are so eager and excited, they start doing some investigating themselves. They find houses that fit their criteria, and check all of their boxes. This is great, having your clients actively engaged in the whole process is awesome. They know what they want better than any agent ever could. The problem is when they give you lists of homes they have spent hours of time compiling, sifting through hundreds of houses that won't make the cut, and finding out that the information they have is not the best. This is not only frustrating to the would be home buyers, but it looks bad for the industry. If I didn't know any better, I would think that if a house is labeled as FOR SALE, that the house would be I don't know, for sale! This is the case unfortunately from time to time. The listings on these free sites that do not require any verification or agent input are unfair to the willing buyers. I have received listings from clients that they would like to go see. Maybe it is a house that didn't make a list we created, or is outside the price range or area we normally look. Either way, this was a house that seemed to slip through the cracks of our searches and could really be a possibility. Then I go to book the showing and guess what? The house has been sold months prior, is pending now, or is completely off the market. How frustrating to have to let your buyer know that time and again, sorry the properties have not been updated and it is no longer available. There has to be a better way to keep these listings updated. Is it laziness on the part of the listing agent? Glitches in the system itself or just the fact that once a listing has sold, everyone just moves on? It has to be better. That is why my clients have access to a system that updates listings based on what is actually happening, when it is happens. I encourage anyone looking for houses to reach out to an agent, because finding your dream home, or homes, is especially frustrating when you realize you never had a chance because it has been long gone. Don't make the mistake and think that everyone does their jobs in a timely matter, just contact someone who will go the extra mile for you and help find ACTIVE listings you can explore!! Happy House Hunting!