Have you really viewed that house?
How do you house hunt? Are you a sofa surfer who looks at almost every Rightmove listing that comes available online? Or are you someone who is much more specific, purely hunting in a very small area? We are all very different you know. First time buyers often have to work to a tight budget, finances dictating what they can afford to buy. Further up the chain, home movers have much more exacting needs, ranging from the location they want to live in, through to the need for an additional bathroom!
The internet is great for house hunters. I’m not going to dispute other wise. In many ways it has become a modern-day newspaper but with so much more detail. It’s easy to look online. We can do it at work. We can do it from home. We can even search for a property whilst sat in a cafe from our smart phones. I know people who tap into the details whilst outside the house (Rightmove’s current location tool is great for this). We then make a decision. Do we book a viewing or not? And this is where property hunting often becomes difficult for many!
A true story
Last week, I had a chat about property marketing in order to attract viewers with a client. We were discussing all the places we would promote her home and how we would we do it. Rather than reply how great she thought it all was, her reply shocked me. She felt house hunting had become so much more difficult than it was when she bought her first home 12 years ago. I asked her to explain.
14 years ago, this lady had to house hunt differently. She bought the newspaper. She had a notepad and an A-Z map. She listed the houses she liked the look of in the newspaper on her pad. She then looked up the addresses in her A-Z map. If she liked the area, they stopped on the list. If she didn’t they got crossed off. She would then visit or call the agents for property details and to book viewings. In total she viewed 7 houses. The one she purchased was a result of the estate agent recommending a new listing coming up. That estate agent was us.
She told me this time round has now viewed over 100 houses. In reality she has actually seen 2. She admits she has become more fussy. She felt some houses looked far too dark, other she felt might be too overlooked, she even admitted to not liking the bathroom in one and the wallpaper in another. Have we become too demanding as a nation? I know what she is looking for. My job is now to help her find this. I’ll do this the good old-fashioned way. I’ll pick up the phone and call her once I find it!
Go and view
On the internet, you can see pretty (and sometimes not so pretty) pictures. You can get the measurements. At JDG we even feature floor plans. However it is no substitute for a real viewing. Only on a real viewing can you really see a house. Viewing a house is about getting a feel for it. It’s seeing how the light shimmers through the window. It’s taking in the ambience. You can only truly imagine yourself living in a house when you are stood inside it. The internet can’t do this. You really must go and view!
I’m going to suggest this. Make a basic list of your needs. Keep it loose. Don’t put so much emphasise on the photos you see. You’ll be changing many things anyway. Focus on the area, the price range you can afford and how many bedrooms minimum you need. Now go and view. You might be pleasantly surprised!
My name is Michelle. I am director at JDG Estate Agents. We are here to help both home sellers and buyers. Please let my team know what you are looking for. We are here to help you find your perfect house. Call us on 01524 843322 or 01524 409100