Go House Hunting
Most buyers begin their search online using the MLS search tool such as the one we offer here on our site. Online searching is a great way to start. It will help you get a feel for the market and develop working knowledge of the areas that are of interest to you. Specifically, it will inform you about current pricing as well as properties currently available for sale.
The advent of the Internet has absolutely changed the rules of house hunting. Today, by the time most buyers are ready to begin their actual in person home search, they have acquired an unprecedented amount of market knowledge, due to the abundance of listing data available online.
However, there is still considerable value added when a good real estate agent enters the picture to assist you. At some stage you should absolutely avail yourself to the financial and other advantages of having a good real estate agent assist you with navigating the entire process of finding and acquiring a new home. It makes no sense not to. First of all, it costs you nothing. Secondly, a good real estate agent can help you coordinate and centralize your search and keep you focused, saving you valuable time and sparing you from the hassles involved in arranging appointments with numerous listing agents.
In a robust market, properties come on and off the market quickly and often. To succeed at finding the right home requires consistent looking in earnest for a condensed period of time. A good agent knows the market and can give you valuable advice about different areas and properties. They are a reality check that can prevent you from making a mistake. They act as a buffer between you and the listing agent, where the listing agent probably doesn't have your best interest in mind. A good agent has been through the process of acquiring homes many times and, once you've selected the home you want, provides invaluable assistance during the offer to purchase, home inspection and financing processes.
Again we strongly suggest that you work with a good agent. Once you choose one that feels right, venture out from the safe, though abstract, confines of the virtual world of online listings and begin your more reality based home search with the kind of true and valuable help that can only come from a qualified real estate agent.