The Christmas and New Year period is a time of year to relax and unwind. For the real estate industry it is the calm before the storm as January tends to be a hectic time of house hunting – certainly judging by traffic to real estate website which sees the highest level of visitors over the next few weeks.
With this backdrop it does surprise me and to be honest frustrate me that some in this industry omit to update information of their listings on the web over this critical period. Let me explain my frustration.
Just yesterday my wife and I decided that we were keen to explore the idea of a new house for this new year. Scanning the web we found some interesting properties – we narrowed it down to 2 properties. One property contained within the details on realestate.co.nz the fact that the property had an open home 1pm to 1.45pm Saturday and Sunday. So eager to enjoy a beautiful day to view a prospective property we drove round to find a deserted house – no open home, no real estate agent!
Now I know exactly why this situation arose. The house in question was listed at the end of November and on the for sale board in the street it actually said “Deadline for offers – 17 December”. So there was clearly no intention for the property to be an open home on the 10th January. But why had the website not been updated !!
But image for a minute that I was not involved in this industry – maybe I am moving to Auckland or NZ and am in the city and want to find a house – I rely on the web (why shouldn’t I, it is the most comprehensive source of property information). To me this house should have been open for viewing yesterday – or else the details on the listing should have been amended.
I should not have to rely on calling an agent or picking up a paper – the web should be and must be the most complete, accurate and up to date source of information of properties for sale – not a forgotten archive of what was listed day, weeks or months ago. Real estate is a service business and the service this agent left me experiencing was one that would not encourage me to use them in the future or to recommend them.
So a New Year wish from me to the real estate industry – please look at the web this year and from now on, as the live picture of your listings – update them, review them and in so doing help people like me who want to buy a property to use it to make my life easy.