When buying a home, the internet is the first place most people will look. Sites like Zillow and Trulia list homes in real-time and offer ways to filter your online home search so that you don’t waste time browsing houses that don’t meet your criteria. Here are 5 ways to level up your online home search.
Set Your Price Range
There is no point in viewing homes that you can’t afford. It will only make you frustrated. Keep in mind that a new house comes with more expenses than just your mortgage payment.
When searching online for a home, set your max price range to eliminate houses that are outside of your budget. You may also want to set a threshold on the low end of the price range to avoid looking at houses that are in disrepair.
Set an Area for Your Online Home Search
Location is one of the most important things to consider when making a real estate investment. You might not know exactly which neighborhood you want to live in, but you’ll know how far away you want to be from a few key places.
Maybe you want to stay within a 10-mile radius of your work, your child’s school, or a family member’s house. On Zillow, you can use the pen tool to draw a custom area that you are interested in. You can also filter by zip codes, towns, and counties.
Specify Type of Home
Are you set on buying a single-family home or are you open to a condo or townhome? Would you like to buy land that you can build a house on? Check off all the types of properties that you are interested in. This way, if you want to buy an already built house, you won’t click on a property within your budget to find that it is just a plot of land.
Use Filters for Your Online Home Search
Customize your home search by including other priorities, like the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, square footage, whether or not it has a garage, and more. Think about any features that are non-negotiable for you. Filter out homes that don’t have features that you need.
Hire a Buyer’s Agent
While it’s helpful to browse listings online, the best way to find a home that meets your needs is to hire a buyer’s agent. Professional agents know about houses for sale before they hit online listings. Tell your agent what you are looking for and they may very well get you a showing before anyone else sees it online.