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Online House Hunting Pros and Cons

Rob Chrisman - moves mortgage rates - Opes Advisors


Our Advisors are actively engaged with our clients while they’re shopping for a house. House hunting can be a tedious endeavor, and the market is hot in many areas with little inventory. Online tools to help with buying a home on the internet offer the appearance of ease of access but our Advisors know that things are complicated in the world of buying a home today, and in complicated situations, hiring a professional agent or broker to help can make a huge difference. Using the internet to buy a home is almost impossible although there are mobile apps that will make it seem easy.


There are advantages of house hunting online. Our clients can quickly see a huge number of properties on the market, with some details about each and the asking price. It’s a good way to get a feel for the broad outlines of the market. Most sites let you tailor a search to certain types of homes or certain areas. Online sites often list details of who is handling the sale, so you can follow up if you find a promising home. You might have to dig around in the listing to find it, but it is there.


But our Advisors will remind clients that there are pitfalls in a complicated market and looking only online may leave you vulnerable to them. Online listings are only as good as the information that was input. If the listing doesn’t show it, you don’t know it, but a buyer’s agent can quickly do more research and a good one already has. Not every home for sale, or every detail about it, is available online. She may know that the price on a home is about to be reduced or that a brand-new listing that is perfect for you is about to hit the market. An experienced agent knows what other comparable homes are selling which can mean the difference between an offer that’s rejected or accepted and the difference between paying the right price and paying too much.


Only you can best judge whether buying a home on the internet all by yourself will work for you but consider the money you may save by hiring a pro. The good thing about hiring a buyer’s agent is it doesn’t cost you one dime more than going directly to the listing agent without representation. In fact, it can cost you big time if you don’t. And your Advisor is happy to recommend a real estate agent if you like!



Information is accurate on the date of publication. Please check with a Mortgage Advisor and consult with your tax advisor for current information related to your specific situation.

Programs only for qualified borrowers. All borrowers subject to credit approval and underwriting terms and conditions. Programs subject to change without notice. Some restrictions apply.

Opes Advisors, a Division of Flagstar Bank | Member FDIC | Equal Housing Lender