I thought house shopping would be fun but I was wrong. It isn’t. Every used house has some problems; some structural, some cosmetic, some that can be overlooked, some that cannot. Even in this down market houses are selling quickly. If you waffle you lose your dream house (or your approximate dream house.) Last time I shopped for real estate the internet allowed totally easy access to information about houses. If you just browsed, or if you knew the neighborhood or the address or the MLS # you could access all the information about the house. Now it is more difficult to search by neighborhood. When you see a house you think you might like you can only print out the most basic information about the house. The companies hold back the complete listing specs. Sometimes they hold back the pictures of the interior. You cannot retrieve all the info from a real estate company unless you register and allow the company to contact you. Companies are hoarding data to drum up customers. It makes searching very frustrating and it’s difficult to choose a good house when so much information is being withheld. If you have signed with an agent you must bother the agent for every house you wish to study, no matter how casual your interest might be.
I have a property I need to sell before I can buy so my real estate agent does not want to show me properties until I have a firm offer. So even though I have signed with an agent, I have been conducting my search by myself and running into all this chicanery. It is not pretty to see the “business” techniques being employed to sell real estate in this crazy market and to compel customers to commit to an agency.
The crisis in the housing market has hurt home buyers in almost every way, except the interest rates.