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According to the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) 2013 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers survey, Internet growth in home buying is growing, but buyers who use the Internet are more likely to say they need a real estate agent.
The highest share of buyers in the survey’s history — 92 percent — reported using the Internet to search for a home to buy. Forty-two percent of buyers reported starting their home search by looking for properties online, while 17 percent said their first step was to contact a real estate agent.
More highlights of the report include:
- 43 percent of buyers said they found the home they purchased online, up from 8 percent in 2001.
- 88 percent of buyers said they purchased their home through a real estate agent.
- Among those who used the Internet to search for homes, that share grew up to 90 percent
Buyers ranked the following services highest that agents’ can provide them in their search:
- Finding the right property
- Helping to negotiate terms of the sale and price negotiations
- Identifying comparable properties and assisting with paperwork.
The bottom line? While the vast majority of buyers use the Internet during the home buying process, the Internet does not replace the real estate agent in the transaction. In fact, buyers who used the Internet were more likely than those who did not use the Internet to purchase their home through an agent!