Buying a new TV? Is it time to replace that worn out refrigerator? Good news! You have a ton of choices. Bad news-you have a ton of choices! Like most people, you’ll spend hours researching prices, quality and service. You begin by looking online, counting the number of positive reviews each has. You’ll look for gold stars and you’ll organize all the comments from bad to good. Perhaps you’ll even give a Facebook shout-out to friends asking for recommendations and advice. You’ll narrow it down to just a few options and then, and only then, will your purchasing decision be complete. You may even decide to splurge for an extended warranty to protect your investment.
Time to plan the perfect family vacation? Phone calls are made to friends and friends of friends to get suggestions. You visit all the travel sites and you play the comparison games. How is the hotel rated? Do they provide good value for the money? What are the amenities? Local attractions? Will the rental car and flight be bundled? Should you purchase trip insurance in the event your plans change?
Shopping via research and review has become a way of life. We investigate our doctors and hospitals using online rating sites. We check out Yelp before dining at a new restaurant. We scour Amazon reviews before buying just about anything from a pair of socks to a pair of speakers.
These days, making any purchase can be a complicated affair. Many of us wouldn’t even dream of trying something new or buying something of worth without doing a bit of research first. But amazingly, when it’s time to find a new home, we stop short. Nearly 92% of potential buyers begin their searches online. Most will compare prices, number of beds/bath or land availability. Some will dig deeper, researching schools and neighborhoods. Few will spend as much energy selecting a qualified agent to represent them in what is potentially their biggest purchase thus far.
As a Realtor, I urge you to do your homework! Use some of your tried-and-true tactics. Don’t just call the number on a sign and hope you get a qualified voice on the other end of the line. Read the reviews and ask family and friends. Don’t stop at a phone number but do shop for the agent that makes the most sense for your individual needs. Do they specialize in your neighborhood? Do they know the right people (banks, attorneys, mortgage brokers)? Look up their license, their online reviews, and their websites. Get a feel for who they are in the community. Ask questions!
Sadly, many people spend more time researching running shoes than the person or real estate team helping them negotiate their largest asset. This isn’t the time to cut corners. Hire a home inspector. Invest in a title examiner. Have a survey prepared to ensure your lot has no encroachments. Consider paying extra for a home warranty to insure systems and appliances. Find the perfect Realtor. The extra energy spent early on will pay off exponentially in the end.
Wishing all of the dads a Happy Father’s Day❤️