For the past few weeks the process of finding a house has been in progress. Some of the initial steps that we’ve tried before working with a real estate agent are:
- LMS/Zip Realty.
- Zillow – for those that have an iPhone, I would highly recommend their app. The app allows you to use the build in GPS to navigate to that are listed with them.
- Edina Realty, Century 21, etc.
- Driving around neighborhoods we like.
I would like to share that we have had success finding houses for sale either through the web and just driving around looking for “for sale” signs. Through some of this initial process I would like to share some of the struggles that we’ve had thus far.
- If you have a “brochure box” on the top of your “for sale” sign, please keep brochures handy. I understand that printing in color might be a little pricey but there are alternatives (I’ll list a little later on). Today, about 15% of the houses we wanted additional information via the brochure box was empty. Dear sellers, consider this a possible lost customer.
- Not all websites were up-to-date with the status of each house. There were many houses that were sold but the website was not updated accordingly. Result, more time driving and more gas wasted. Result, we found more houses to look at 🙂
- If you’re selling your house, please keep up with the landscaping and please clean up the crap around your house/garage (This also includes the banks that own foreclosed houses). There were a number of houses Remember, curb appeal is HUGE!
- There nothing that can really be done about this but it was a tad confusing when there were the “services signs”, aka Bob’s Siding Co. Installed the Siding on this House. This was kind of a false positive when looking. “OH!, there’s one down that street. NOT!”
Enough griping. Homeowners, here are some recommendations that would have hooked me in today or might help others.
- Keep up with landscaping and keep your yard neat.
- If you have low hanging branches are other foliage hiding your house, you might want to clean this up. First impressions happen with houses too.
- If there’s paint pealing take a weekend to scrape and put a fresh coat on. It helps!
- Keep plenty of extra brochures in the brochure box and check daily!
- If you want to go extra cheap on brochures but super informative consider having basic information on your brochure but have a website setup with additional information and pictures. Creating a simple website can be done easily in an evening and in most cases free. Some internet providers give website space for free to customers and other solutions such as Blogger and WordPress could be used.
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