Tapping the Internet’s Best Resources
In This Chapter
Honing in on helpful real estate information
Starting to shop online for homes
Knowing the pitfalls of real estate Web sites
No other personal financial transaction provokes more financial and emotional anxiety than buying a home. Most of us rightfully feel huge trepidation when buying something with upward of six digits in its sticker price. You have to confront deciding how much to spend, selecting a good real estate agent, negotiating on a property, choosing a mortgage, and handling the myriad closing details — all of which are mysterious, jargon-filled, and fraught with commission-hungry salespeople. (Ditto for the headaches when it comes time for you to sell.) Add in some time pressure for a job relocation or impending birth of a child (or two), and you have a surefire recipe for psychological stress.
Enter the Internet. In this chapter, we highlight how you can use the Internet to make yourself a more informed consumer and make your home search more efficient and effective. We name names and recommend for your consideration the best sites that we’ve reviewed. We also warn you about common pitfalls that you may encounter online.
Finding Useful Information
The number of real estate Web sites vastly exceeds those good enough to warrant a bookmark. In this section, we give some pointers so that you can quickly head in the right direction when you start your search.
Get your feet wet at Realtor.com
Given the sheer ...