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The War on Real Estate Drugs

             The War on Real Estate Drugs

Seamus insists his uncle has to see War on Drugs when they play Milwaukee in September.  You be the judge with the sample below.


For the present I have to deal with the “real estate crack” (REC) epidemic, fighting the real estate war on drugs.  I see the effects weekly.  Sometimes it’s HGTV that introduces people to the habit or Zillow or Trulia.

Advertising sites entice the unsuspecting with bits of information – photos, pricing and Zestimates .  Homes are listed as available when they’ve been sold for weeks.  Information without analysis is clutter.  As noted in my last e-note, clutter is bad and can cost you money.

Sites like Zillow make money by selling rotating site ads to real estate agents.  I asked an agent friend, who pushes (advertises) on a couple of sites, how it works.  He said when someone makes an online real estate inquiry (hey man, got any real estate?) – if he is next up on the advertising rotation – he receives a text and an e-mail that provide the inquirer’s name and phone number.  This allows the agent to contact the person.

Let’s look at how the REC habit might cost you real money.

  1. The agent who contacts you (or who you contact) may have 25 years’ experience or 25 days.  You can be assured the agent works for the seller or is a part-time buyer agent (whatever that is).  I say this with certainty because Homebuyer Associates is the only Exclusive Buyer Agent in the 4-county metropolitan area.   Might an agent who doesn’t work for you, with little or no experience, cost you money.
  2.  The drug site, er advertising site, er real estate site… says the home has 3 bathrooms and the Zestimate value is $254,900.

The site (corporations are people according to the Supreme Court) never visited the home and used public data – some correct, some not.  The home actually had 2 full baths (not 3) with a Zestimate value of $274,000.  Not visiting the home and not preparing a market analysis may have cost some other buyer $20,000.  (Our client has an accepted offer for $254,000.)  Be careful of that real-estate high.

3.  Of the Gen Y’s searching for a home, 58% use a mobile site or app to search.  For Gen X it is 53% (NAR survey, 2014).  It’s not just the search but the push of information that creates unmanageable clutter.  It can also create panic (the next step for Zillow).  Panic makes for bad choices and apps make it easier than ever.   When your innocent inquiry puts you at a disadvantage, the system ceases to be innocent.

My counsel:  search the sites.  They provide other information that, with analysis, may be of value, but understand what the sites are.  The sites are businesses that promote the selling of real estate under the guise of information.  Failing to understand that puts you at a If you are not careful about how you approach your real-estate purchase, you put your money at risk.  It’s that simple.


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Homebuyer Associates
1835 N. Riverwalk Way
Milwaukee, WI 53212
Phone: 414-254-4129