Try these home-buying tips while social distancing
There is no doubt we are all living under a new normal. As the coronavirus pandemic hit our area particularly hard, millions have been ordered to stay home to prevent spreading the virus. We have found new ways to live, work and cope, primarily with the help of online services.
Even the real estate sector has found a way to thrive by taking business online. Zillow reports that virtual house tours have skyrocketed. The number of 3D home tours developed using its software increased 200% in the first two weeks of March, compared to all of February. So, although there are a good portion of people who are waiting until things blow over, over half of Americans say it’s still a good time to buy a home.
Buying a house remotely with zero regrets might have seemed like a myth in the past, but it’s now considered new-normal. Here are four home-buying tips on how to tour a house remotely and feel good about your purchase.
Tip #1: Hire a tech-savvy Realtor
Your Realtor is your biggest ally when it comes to buying a home. Right now, technology plays a huge factor in how people buy and sell homes. When hiring a Realtor, see if they have the confidence to help you schedule virtual showings, browse listings online and understand how to navigate the web to take care of any sort of legal matters that would normally be done in person, like title searches and recordings. You will feel much more confident in your home search if you can work with someone who can master the technology now necessary in buying and selling homes.
Tip #2: Share a wish list
Once you’ve found a Realtor you feel confident working with, provide a list of your must-haves (and have nots) that fit into your budget. Sharing a wish list will help your Realtor find the best match in available inventory. Consider location, home size and style, and amenities, like high-end finishes. Because what you see online may not always tell the whole story, the wish list will help you feel more confident your agent’s property choices.
Tip #3: Pay attention to virtual house tour details
If you’re interested in a home, request a virtual tour through your agent. These tours can either be done live or pre-recorded; see what works best for everyone involved. `
During a virtual tour, be as attentive as possible and take notes. The goal is to make this as similar to an-in person showing as possible. Have your wish list handy, and pay close attention to what you want, whether it’s a big kitchen or lots of storage By preparing for the tour, you lower the chance of overlooking the features you want most.
Tip #4: Do a neighborhood drive by or take advantage of online maps
If you’re interested in a home, take a drive through the neighborhood if you are able to get a better look at the exterior as well as what’s in proximity. If you live farther away or are unable to drive through the area, contact your Realtor to get more details or do some online investigating. Tools like Google Street View™ allow users to get a pretty accurate and up-to-date view of what’s nearby. While you won’t be able to get an understanding of the neighbors, you can see the surrounding properties and amenities.
Finance your perfect match
While virtual house tours may not be as ideal as in-person showings, they don’t need to be daunting. Stay calm and use your resources to your advantage. Greater Alliance Federal Credit Union is here for you during these challenging times. We have been working to provide safe and high-quality customer service, and our team is here if you need us for home lending needs. Contact us today to learn about our mortgage options, and start enjoying your perfect home match.