5 Helpful Tips to Buy a Home in the Age of the Internet
“Local Neighborhood Info
One of the most important aspects of buying a home is understanding the neighborhoods and areas in which you are interested. Using the internet to learn more about the areas you’re considering can help narrow down the neighborhoods that work best for your needs.
Many neighborhoods with homeowners associations now post their bylaws, covenants and restrictions online. You can find all kinds of valuable info in these documents, and even the fiscal health of the association. Simply do a quick Google search of the neighborhoods in which you are interested to find out more about them.
How-tos on getting a mortgage, finding a real estate agent and making an offer are all right at a homebuyer’s fingertips online. Even if you have previously bought and sold a few homes, it’s still nice to know that this information is online, in case you need a quick refresher course.
But note that the process of buying a home can vary slightly based on different regions of the country. Be sure to find resources that are specific to the area in which you are looking for a home.
Finding Professional Services
Most homebuyers will need the services of real estate professionals to get the job done. Realtors, mortgage lenders, title companies, home inspectors and appraisers are all a part of the process. The internet is a great resource to research and find the right professional that fits your needs.
Property Tax Records
Tax records can show when a property was last sold, how much it sold for, how much the buyer financed and details about the previous owners. This information can be valuable for many different reasons.
Property tax record websites differ by area – many times they are maintained by the county. If your county has a property tax website, this can be a great resource to find data about certain homes online.
Most counties have some sort of regulation on building and construction permits. It’s likely that this information is available online and available to the public. If so, you can learn a lot about a property based on this information. Homebuyers can check to see when the water heater and roof were last replaced, or whether a deck addition was fully permitted or just a project that the homeowner did themselves without a permit.
Use More Than One Source.
The internet is unregulated and can serve up information that varies wildly. Be sure to consult multiple resources to cross-check facts to make sure that you are receiving correct information. Consult with your local real estate professional as well. They can help guide you to the most reputable resources while you research online.”
As Andrew mentioned, consulting with your local real estate professional can be an important step in addition to using the internet to buy your home. Nest Properties Austin is here to help make the home buying process a breeze, with over 15 years of experience in the Austin market, let us be your local experts on neighborhood and property information.