Thursday, March 30, 2017

Have It Your Way

The current plethora of informational sites displaying residential property reminds me of the old Burger King slogan:  Have it your way.  If you want alerts, apps, price ranges, school districts, agent ratings, or almost anything else, it's available on the internet, usually on multiple sites.  Even though Trulia is owned by Zillow, for example, they maintain two separate sites (clearly, it's easier to be a consumer than to be an agent trying to keep all listings and profiles updated!).  If you prefer one display over another, go for it.  If you like the search parameters of another site, have that one delivered to your inbox also. Want to know what an outside evaluator thought?  Check our Squeakly report. For those who choose to search through the site, we can wrap our contact information around the property data from the MLS. 

If you go back in time (I'm writing this on TBT), clients, who were then called customers--no buyer brokerage existed yet--had to come into a real estate office, to pore over a physical book of listings. That book came out every two weeks.  If you wanted to know what had sold in the past, and at what price, that was in another book, which came out every 6 or 12 months.  Books couldn't leave the hands of a Realtor, so there was no examining the inventory in the peace and quiet of your own home.  It's amazing to me, in fact, but more people log on to our site between 5 and 7 AM than at any other time.  They certainly weren't in a real estate office at those hours!

Given all of the options, it's easy to be overwhelmed by too much information.  Most people now know that Zestimates are off by 20%, on average, and more on the high end.  It's not surprising that outdated and expired listings appear in a Google search.  That's why, according to consumer studies, most buyers and sellers want to sit down in person at some point in the process.  That's why we're here.  Call us at any time--ok, maybe not at 5 AM, although I do get emails from agents at that hour--and help us add the "special sauce" that Burger King boasted of adding to the Whopper.  We call it market knowledge, and it isn't edible, but it is good!