The Power is Now

Navigating today’s online real estate marketplace | Columns | laconiadailysun.com – The Laconia Daily Sun

Real Estate websites are attracting so much attention these days, and why? Back in the “good old days,” the buying process involved long road trips over many days, looking at homes with your favorite Realtor. The process was fun, but incredibly time consuming for buyers! Today, the home search process is streamlined and comprehensive. Buyers can access available properties instantly, and can view detailed listing information, high resolution photos, and virtual tours. Home sellers also benefit immensely from real estate search websites because an expanded, national and international network of potential buyers have instant access to their home’s features, photos, videos, and Matterport Tours. Many of the real estate web platforms today offer a huge variety of useful tools, including map-based and advanced searches, property e-mail alerts, comparable sales, town/city demographics, community pages, and a plethora of regional data and real estate insight.

At Roche Realty Group, we provide worldwide exposure to our seller clients by promoting their properties on over 80 national and international websites. Additionally, approximately 1,500 individual agent and brokerage IDX websites automatically syndicate our listings through participation in the Northern New England Real Estate Network.

Here’s a look at some of the popular websites out there:

● Founded in 2006, Zillow has built the largest online real estate marketplace, with approximately 135 million properties (including “for sale by owner” homes), and over 36 million visitors per month. While Zillow’s “Zestimates” are a popular feature, they are based on algorithms which don’t always translate well to the uniqueness of the rural Lakes Region. As a result, these Zestimates can be very misleading and it is wise for the consumer to check with an experienced Realtor or appraiser regarding the true property value. Zillow earns its revenue by charging fees to Realtors and lenders, in return for leads. As such, the agents displayed in the “contact” area may not necessarily be the listing agent.

Realtor.com was founded in 1996 and is now operated by Move, Inc., a subsidiary of News Corp. The website is associated with the National Association of Realtors®. This national website links to hundreds of regional Multiple Listing Services (which are updated regularly by listing agents). Similarly to Zillow.com, Realtors pay advertising fees to obtain leads. In contrast, Realtor.com does not give consumers the option to search “for sales by owner” listings. The accuracy of the website is very good!

● Founded in 2005, this site was purchased by Zillow in 2015. Visitors can research trends and neighborhood insights. The website offers neighborhood reviews as well as customizable geographic searches. You can save searches if you create an account. Trulia has a great mobile app for buyers.

● This luxury website has been recognized for excellence by the WMA Awards and the Webby Awards and has been voted “best of the web” by Forbes magazine multiple times. Luxuryrealestate.com has consistently ranked as the #1 portal for luxury properties on the internet.

● The official website of the Northern New England MLS, NNEREN is the main database where New England real estate professionals and affiliates directly input their listings. The website offers searches for residential homes, condos, multi-family properties, mobile homes, land, commercial real estate, and rentals. Many listing agents post open house information on NNEREN.

● These websites list commercial, industrial, and investment properties and land for sale or lease. The New England Commercial Property Exchange portal provides a wealth of commercial information, and a member-posted “wants/needs” section.

● A regional website that provides news and information pertaining to Boston and surrounding regions. Owned by the Boston Globe Media Partners. The real estate section includes listings for NH real estate.

● Since 1973 Homes & Land has been simplifying the home search by connecting home buyers with trusted experts in their communities. The site has interesting blog articles and is easy to use. Their popular real estate magazine covers and is distributed in 150 US and Canadian markets. In addition to their print publication, free digital issues of their magazine are available to view online.

● On this expansive site, you will find apartments, homes, and condominiums for rent in your area. Compare current rates and availability, and view HD videos, photos, pet policies, and more.

● This national site has more traffic, listings, and geographic coverage than any other commercial real estate marketplace, with over 5 million monthly visitors.

● Google is the most comprehensive and expansive search engine on the planet, offering the world’s information at your fingertips. With Google, you can find every individual real estate website with ease, and seek out resources relevant to your real estate interests. Google has 24,605,253 followers on just Linkedin! You can search for unlimited types of properties on Google, and the vast majority of consumers initiate their search on Google. A quick search will point you to your desired destination in seconds.

National websites like Zillow and Realtor.com excel as a national database, but your local brokerage websites really stand out because they provide a pulse and a wealth of information on the local marketplace, with searches customized to the area. They also offer tremendous insight through their blogs.

With Google, you can target specific searches with keywords relevant to Lakes Region real estate. At Roche Realty Group, we have focused our marketing program and search capability around multiple sites; however, our presence on Google.com has always been paramount. We have invested substantially in our search engine optimization, digital advertising, and social media marketing to reach a broader audience and ensure that consumers nationwide can have access to the information we provide on www.rocherealty.com.

In summary, as a buyer or seller, you can benefit from exploring all of the above websites to garner as much information as possible about the current market and regional trends. Each website has something unique to offer, and you can benefit from all!

This article was written by Frank Roche. Frank is president of Roche Realty Group with offices in Meredith and Laconia, NH, and can be reached at 603-279-7046. Please feel free to visit www.rocherealty.com to learn more about the Lakes Region and its real estate market.

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