Looking at Homes Online vs In Person

Shopping online has quickly become our go-to for absolutely everything. I’ll admit I do still prefer to buy many things in person if possible, but I often do my research and comparison shopping online first. It just makes sense, you can compare everything, all at once, from your couch.

Some things are however going to be things that you should shop in person, if at all possible. Sometimes it’s not possible and that’s where the beauty of modern day technology takes over. 

I always recommend for my buyers to visit the home they feel is “the one”, at least twice. As you know already know a home is generally your largest investment in your lifetime, so now is the time to be thorough and make sure you see everything for what it is now and in the future. 

The first time you walk into a home, we form a first opinion rather quickly. What you think you’re walking into and what is reality isn’t always the same, in both good and bad ways. Here are some things to keep in mind while shopping for your next home, online and in-person. 

It’s HUGE!  vs. Is this a room or a closet? 

Photographers often use a wide-angle lens to make everything look as large as possible. Between the camera tricks and creative photography and good editing, buyers (and myself) are often surprised by how much smaller a home or room actually is in person compared to the photos. While it’s a great idea to do some preliminary screening online, the logistics of size and layout is best measured in person (or a very thorough and critical realtor working for you aka me). 

It looks like a new home! vs. What's that smell  

HDR image processing can make a home appear brand new. Sometimes you wonder where the house from the photos is because in-person your perfect find can actually be a nightmare. Remember, pictures can be deceiving. Strong pet odors, mold, smoke, and other issues are surprises that you can’t experience online but would likely drastically impact your decision making. 

It looks so peaceful! vs Did I just hear gunshots?  

Home stagers are basically magicians. They magically transform almost any home to a picture perfect, straight out of a magazine home. They creates a peaceful environment, but those items can also distract you from other details. I suggest for buyers to come back and check out the street and neighborhood a couple more times if they can. At different times of day and/or different days, and also after storms (Florida summer rain is no joke).
If you’re planning to shop in the future, start checking out possible neighborhoods sooner than later to save yourself time while shopping.
Some things to look for – Are there kids out playing? Is there excessive street parking? A lot of traffic?

I have a good feeling! vs Is that a goat farm next door?  

Online listings will rarely show flaws in a property. It’s ALL positive information. Bad neighbors likely won’t be mentioned in that online blurb you read. Yes, that actually does happen. This can range from the condition of surrounding homes, parking problems on the street, bad neighbors and nonstop barking dogs. Remember, this is your biggest investment, make sure you love your home and those around you!

3 Real Estate Shopping Tips

Don’t get too attached! 
Wait until you visit the property and see everything in person. That can sometimes make all of the difference in the world.

Find a great realtor, such as myself! 
As a buyer’s agent, it is my job to help you notice everything about a property, the good, the bad and even the ugly. As a professional, we notice things that you may initially overlook or not think about.

Try to be Patient 
Impulse decisions in real estate can cost major dollars and have life-altering effects.

Are you thinking of buying or selling? Have questions? I’m always just a call or text away 727-326-2963. FREE, local, professional advice is my commitment to you. Now let’s go find your happy place!

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