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Beware the bloated real estate portals

May 31, 2012

50 wattle st1 150x116 Beware the bloated real estate portalsThere can be little doubt that the first place many would-be buyers look for houses in a particular area is on the large real estate portals such as realestate.com.au or domain.com.au and why not, it is so simple to search by the suburb you are looking to move into and then narrow your search from there.

However, the number of properties you are shown is not always the whole story. You may find 50, 100 or 500 houses ‘for sale’ in your chosen area but closer inspection may show that the actual number of properties for sale is nowhere near this amount. This can be for a number of reasons:

1. If a property is not and exclusive listing with one agent, but an open listing,  then each agent could well have a separate online listing for the property on the portals.

2. Some agents, for whatever reason, may leave a listing online even though the property has been sold or has been withdrawn from sale by the vendors. This is not solely the real estate agents fault and could easily be an oversight on their part so it is also up to the vendor and/or buyer to check and make sure that their property is no longer listed for sale.

3. There have even been talk that some less than scrupulous agents have also left particularly enticing listings online deliberately as a marketing ploy so that on enquiry, the prospective buyer is told that the property has just been withdrawn from the market but that they would be happy to show their other ‘live’ listings….

Why does it even matter, you may ask, if these excess listings are left to bloat the real estate portals?

Mainly because these inflated statistics of available properties can affect confidence in the overall housing market.

If it appears to buyers that there is a huge supply of available houses, surely that will encourage them to shop around more, make them less likely to commit and exacerbate the feeling that they can make ridiculous offers because people will be desperate to sell in a clogged market.

It is up to both agents and vendors to ensure that their listings on the portals are up to date and give a true reflection of the homes that are available for sale or the portals risk losing their relevancy.

As a footnote and some blatant self-promotion, on all our single property websites, your home can be marked as SOLD with one click or removed entirely at the vendors request.

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