Looking for a new home or property in ‘normal’ times can be daunting as it is, searching for your dream house in the midst of a global pandemic may seem unsurmountable… or is it?
A year on from the first case of COVID-19 in Ireland, we have adapted in so many ways and all businesses have progressed with their use of technology. Estate agents were one of the first businesses to go virtual with viewings moving online in various ways and formats.
For a business that trades on face to face interaction and physical viewings of properties, this swift move online was difficult for smaller agencies in particular who did not have the IT capability and resourcing of larger agencies.
However, we achieved it and in fact, virtual viewings have become an efficient way for agents to shortlist interested clients and for clients to get both a detailed and helicopter view of a property.
From 360 degree tours to virtual tours with voiceovers to real time facetime and zoom tours, busy clients can now narrow down their search for properties from the comfort of their own home instead of trapsing around various property viewings.
So what are our top tips to get the most from virtual viewings?
- Watch the initial virtual viewing from the agent and jot down key features and queries you would like more information on with the agent on a follow up call.
- As well as looking at the recorded tour, check out the property on Google maps. This will give you another view of the size and orientation of the property as well as neighbouring properties and access.
- If you really like the property but you are not familiar with the location, make sure you visit the area during the day and at night. This will also give you a better idea of local amenities, parking and whether you like the look of the area! It will also allow you to view the outside of the house so you can see if pipes need replacing, the general upkeep of windows, paintwork etc.
- It is the agent’s job to know the property inside out so don’t be afraid to ask probing questions. For example, how long has the property been on the market for, what is the BER rating, are there are issues such as damp or leaks etc.
- Still unsure? Request a further viewing with the agent on facetime or zoom so you can see the house again and talk it through in real time.
For expert advice, contact Clare Connolly Estate Agents on 01-2164724.