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How the Internet has Changed the Real Estate Industry

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The internet has changed the home buying process. Many years ago, home buyers had to rely entirely on their realtor for finding and viewing properties. Today, home buyers are an active part of the buying process. Although it is important to still work with a professional realtor for their market knowledge and negotiation skills, buyers can also improve their buying experience with the internet.

The increase of buyers on the internet
About 92% of people now use the internet in their home search. Home buyers can improve their buying process by staying active on the internet. Many realtors have multiple clients at once and may not have the ability to immediately send new properties as they come onto the market. Buyers can search daily for new properties that meet their criteria and then send them to their agent. The agent can then use their housing resources to check the status of these properties. The agent can also schedule viewings much quicker.

View images and information before ever seeing the property
The internet has shortened viewings. Before the internet, homebuyers were unable to see the property. The first time they saw the condition of the house was when they actually viewed it. Today, the internet gives buyers the ability to view images and to even read detailed information about the property. This significantly reduces the showing times and even avoids wasted visits to properties that do not meet their needs. Agents can better match their home buyer?s needs by sending them images and housing information ahead of time.

Have detailed city information at your fingertips
Another advantage to the internet is the ability to see the location of the property. Previously, a part of the buying process consisted of scanning the local neighborhood. A single showing could take hours because the buyers would want to check out the local school, grocery store, and parks. The internet gives all of that information to the buyer before they ever see the property. Buyers can make a decision and rule out properties based on these factors. In fact, many new homes searches can be completed based on these specific factors, such as the school?s ratings.

Increase in custom built home purchases
Brand new homes were difficult to sell previously because buyers could not imagine what the house would look like and did not want to purchase something they did not see ahead of time. New homes today, however, can be viewed on the internet. Technology has made it possible to see real time images that mimic the intended build, making it easier to sell new homes, both luxury homes, and traditional condo new homes. In fact, more than six in ten adults (63%) have moved to a new community at least once in their lives now, while 37% have never left their hometowns. With these technological improvements, we only expect to see an increase in the purchase of brand new builds and new homes.

Faster mortgage process
The entire buying process can be sped up now. Communication between the agent, mortgage broker, and client was once a much slower process. Today, communication can happen within seconds. The mortgage company can send over approvals and required documents within minutes, significantly speeding up the mortgage and closing process. If there are any problems with the buying process, they can be notified and solved immediately.

The internet has become a valuable part of the real estate industry. It has drastically changed the way real estate is bought and sold. Real estate buyers especially have an advantage with the ability to search for new homes, view images and detailed property information, and communicate with their agent and mortgage broker. Although the services of a realtor are still beneficial to the buying process, the internet has become an extremely important part of the process as well.

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