90% of people research their home buying options by combing through at least 3 different real estate search engine websites. While this is easy to do, it isn’t enough. I believe we have become almost too reliant on the Internet to help us navigate life. There is something to be said for combing your desired neighborhood and, get this, actually talking to the neighbors.
Speaking with your potential residential peers can give you insight not offered by an online search. For example, if an area has been subjected to a rash of breakins lately, neighbors will tell you. If your neighbors seem happy and say the neighborhood is quite, for example, and you like to have loud parties… you can potentially run into problems. You will get more of a feel for the place you desire to move into by canvassing the neighborhood once or twice, talking to the neighbors, and stopping for gas and groceries at least once within a mile radius.
Finally, don’t settle. Right now too many people are expecting quick results because the Internet culture is quick. Instead, know what you want and be willing to wait for it. This goes for both buyers and sellers. You don’t have to make a deal if you don’t want to and you should hold out for what you have on your wish list that is also within reason.