Online revolution has changed the way the property deals happen now.Here are few tips on how to become a smart buyer.
The days when the only approach for prospective home buyers to find a suitable property was to contact a broker are long over. Of course, personal inspection of a property is still necessary before the final purchase. However, the Internet has made the actual process of short-listing the best options very easy.
Today, more and more people looking for flats actually begin their hunt online. Cities like Mumbai, Pune, Bangalore, Chennai and Delhi have a very high penetration of broadband Internet usage, and this fact has worked very well for prospective home buyers. The many property portals operating today are replete with options of properties in Pune, including in newly constructed and under construction projects as well as in the resale properties segment.
There are definitely advantages to using the online approach in the initial stages of a home search. The Internet allows a prospective homebuyer to analyze the ‘vital statistics’ of a large number of properties within one’s budget in a very short time. Many online listings by developers and resale property owners feature photographs, as well. This helps in the visual aspect of a property search, which is a very important factor.
The various property portals that have proliferated on the Internet are helpful in knowing more about the available options in a certain location, the USPs of the area and the property pricing trends. However, relying solely on property marketing portals is a mistake. The information they provide can be incomplete and sometimes even misleading.
For instance, most home seekers scanning the Internet are often looking for the cost advantage of investing in an under-construction project. Naturally, the primary search parameter tends to be the price. However, Internet searches based solely on price, city and location can generate insufficient and skewed results.
Intending property buyers should be aware that while buying a flat in an under-construction project by a reputed and well-funded developer is safe, an incomplete project by an unknown builder does not offer such assurance. Also, a well-known developer’s reputation is a safety stamp for construction quality and quality internal fittings.
Property listings posted by individual brokers dealing in all sorts of properties usually do not provide this vital information. After all, disclosing details such as name of the project and its developer would kill their marketing advantage. However, it is necessary to know these details before one can make a short-list of options based on quality, investment safety as well as price.
There are, of course, exceptions to this information gap. For instance, many large real estate brokerages have exclusive project marketing mandates with reputable real estate developers. Property listings by such brokerages do tend provide all the necessary details.
Real estate marketing portal listings are usually the first search results to show up during an online property search. This is because these platforms invest heavily in search engine optimization (SEO) to attract Internet traffic. However, no online search for an under-construction property is complete on the basis of just these results. Aspiring buyers also need to visit the websites of reputed developers in their city to check what projects they have in the pipeline.
This route has two huge advantages. In the first place, doubts about the developer’s financial ability to complete a project and also construction quality are eliminated. Secondly, buying an under-construction property directly from a developer eliminates brokerage. In short, make sure your online search for a property includes the websites of reputed developers.
(The writer is CMD of Amit Enterprises Housing Ltd.)
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