Which Mistakes are Most Common When Home Shopping Online?
While online shopping for a new hoe is a great way to find potential choices and eliminate those not fitting your needs, it can lead to specific mistakes. If you’re shopping fora home and you plan to search online, you need to be aware of potential mistakes you could make. Here’s a look at 5 of the most common mistakes made when shopping online for a home.
Believing the Estimated Home Values Found Online
When it’s time to make an offer for a home, you cannot believe the estimated value online. With so many real estate websites out there and many providing their own estimate, it’s hard to know the truth. Remember, online values are simply estimates and not always accurate.
Understanding the real value of the home requires more than just looking at online real estate sites. You need to look into the market value of the home buy using a comparative market analysis. This will allow you to see what other, similar properties are selling for to get a better idea of how the appraisal will look when it’s done.
Using Mortgage Calculators
While mortgage calculators may be a good tool if you know exactly what you’re interest rate will be, the sales price and your down payment, they provide nothing better than a guess without this information. In addition, most of these calculators won’t give you a monthly payment including all your monthly expenses. This can have you believing you can afford far more than you really can.
Some of these calculators don’t account for homeowners insurance, taxes or private mortgage insurance. It’s best to sit down with a recommended lender to get an accurate look at what you can really expect. They will be able to give you a better idea of what you can afford and your monthly payment.
Hiring an Agent Because They Contacted You After an Online Inquiry
Finding the right agent is a vital step in achieving success with buying a home. You don’t want to just hire someone because they responded to an online inquiry. Do your homework and interview a few agents before you make the decision.
There are several reasons why you should hire a buyer’s agent and you should interview more than just one or two before making the decision. While all the agents you interview may get the job done, one may fit better with your specific needs or personality.
Many online real estate sites give agents leads because they pay for them, not because they are qualified to take care of your needs. They don’t really screen the agent, which means you need to take care of that part of the process.
Using Inaccurate Real Estate Websites
Not all websites are great. Some are very inaccurate, especially in the world of real estate. Often buyers will find the property they think is the perfect choice, but it’s not even for sale anymore. It could have been sold six months ago or even a few years ago.
Sometimes, agents and other website don’t update their information and properties that have been sold for months are still listed for sale. It’s best to use only trusted websites when searching for real estate online. If you have an agent, use their website. Good agents will always keep their listings up-to-date.
Getting a Mortgage from an Online Lender
Those sites offering pre-approval in less than five minutes may sound great, but they are not always the best. Sometimes, a real estate deal falls apart specifically because the buyer got their pre-approval online from one of these lenders.
It’s always best to use a trusted, local lender for your pre-approval and mortgage. The internet-based lenders don’t always provide you with what you really need and they cannot provide an accurate pre-approval without certain information from you. They need more than just your credit report or you telling them what you think your credit score and income are.
A real pre-approval will have you submitting an application, documents to back up your income and your credit report will be pulled. This will ensure the lender has a clear picture of what your financial situation is and can give you an accurate pre-approval.
While the internet is a great tool for your home search, there are some things you should be aware of. These five mistakes are seen more than any others and making just one of them could lead to misconceptions or your dream home deal getting pulled right out from under you.