One & Done: A Home Visit Success Story

For most people, the home buying process is a stressful one—with ups and downs, unexpected twists and turns—and it often takes many prospective homes, visits, or offers to find the one meant for you. But then there are people like Anthony who have incredibly good luck and buy the very first place they visit.

As part of our “Drop in and Win” series, we talked to Anthony and his agent about their experience buying this property. Not surprisingly, actually stepping in the door to take a look at the place totally swayed his opinion of the home.

We’ve said that home buying is a bit like dating: you don’t marry the first one you meet (or possibly even the first one you fall in love with). Anthony took a look at a few other places (about 4 or 5), but it didn’t take much time for him to know that first property was the right one. “It was in the best condition for the price,” he said, “and was more updated than the others.” He and his agent, Marissa Kjera, put together an offer and succeeded in getting the place.

The Limitations of Online Shopping

Anthony started his home search online, and while his internet research helped him get a better idea of what he was looking for, he needed to visit the home to understand what the space felt like, and whether the pictures really did it justice.

“With the internet,” Anthony said, “you can really educate yourself about the home buying process and do a lot of research on homes for sale, but actually buying a house is different. You’re only looking at pictures and reading the specs, not getting the full report.” Like online dating, you can get a sense of the qualities you’re looking for in a home, which neighborhoods are in your price range, and rule out homes that you’re not attracted to at all.

“With photos, you can’t really get a feel for the flow of a place,” said his agent, Marissa, “How does it feel when you’re in it? Is it dark or well-lit? You have to visit a home to know these things.” It’s a tricky balance. You don’t want to just rule out a well-priced house because it lacks curb appeal or the backyard is overgrown – these things are easier to change!

Visiting a Home with an Agent is a Game-changer

And not everything is shown in the pictures you see online. “There was this great deck downstairs that looked out over the landscaped area,” Marissa continued, “We didn’t see it until we actually went to the home itself.”

Anthony agreed, “You can definitely narrow things down by screen appeal, but you need to peel the onion back to really get an understanding of the home. You can’t remove the agent or the personal portion of the home buying process.”

Anthony says that Marissa’s knowledge was essential for the negotiations and in the inspections. “It’s really important to have an agent that will walk you through any potential issues with the property,” said Marissa, “and to help everyone—the buyer and seller—get to a happy place.”

As to screen appeal, the unit Anthony bought had an architectural drawing of the front when he saw it on the website. When he went to see it in person, the front was this off-putting salmon color. “The first thing my business partner said was: What color are we going to paint it?” Though initially repelled, when they stepped inside, it was clear the unit was in good condition, was updated, and had the beautiful deck that they hadn’t been able to see online.

While pictures are worth a thousand words, a home visit is worth a million. So if you’ve been waiting to step inside a home, go visit one today – you’ll be entered into our spring sweepstakes. You may just be a lucky winner.

And who knows? You may be as lucky as Anthony and find the home you’ve been looking for!