How Social Media Is Helping Homebuyers
Social media probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when you’re thinking about buying a house. But the truth is, the social sites you’re already using could provide a significant value-add to your home buying experience. Social networking sites like Facebook and Instagram, along with idea sharing sites like Pinterest, are chalk full of ideas, tools, and resources.
Here’s just a few ways to leverage your social network when buying a house.
Leverage Facebook Early in the Search
Facebook is by far the most commonly used social media site on the internet, and the odds are good that you’ve visited it at least once today. But while hundreds of millions of people use Facebook every day, few take advantage of the full potential of the site. The wide variety of content types supported by the platform give you tons of options for getting new information. You can watch videos, look at pictures, join groups, and read articles.
As it stands today, your Facebook feed probably isn’t going to give you access to all this information, but don’t be discouraged. Everything you want to know is only a search away! Many people don’t realize that you can actually search Facebook’s content just like Google, allowing you to discover and connect with people and ideas you wouldn’t otherwise see. In short, Facebook has a lot more than what shows up in your daily newsfeed.
To leverage this search function during the early planning phase of buying a home, use Facebook as a place to find general information. For example, you can search “right time to buy a house” The number of search results will be staggering, so try narrowing it down by filtering your search. Try filtering by “Posts” to see Facebook posts that contain this search term; posts will be the most likely to contain articles and useful information. With this filter, you’ll be shown articles, links, and videos that relate to “the right time to buy a house.” If you’re looking for a real estate agent, you can search “real estate agents” then filter by “Pages” to find an agent in your area. Viewing an agent’s page gives you an idea of who they are, where they work, what types of resources and guidance they provide on a regular basis, and their contact information if you’d like to reach out.
Facebook also has some great resources for those who are actively looking for properties right now. First, Facebook allows for a longer video format than some of the other sites, which means that agents can share detailed videos about properties for sale, giving you a sense not only of the home itself, but the neighborhood and surrounding features, too. Second, Facebook Events can be a great way to search for open house events you might be interested in walking through. Sharing properties and open homes you find on Facebook with your agent also helps them get a better sense of what you’re looking for, so they can find your dream house even faster.
Watch Instagram Stories & IGTV
Instagram is a slightly newer player on the social media scene, but it has gained massive popularity over the last few years. The predominantly photo-based content makes it easy to encounter and interact with diverse accounts. There are three main ways to view content on Instagram: feed posts, stories, and IGTV.
The image-based format of Instagram’s feed posts makes it the perfect location for real estate agents to share property listings and details. Feed videos are limited to a minute or less, which makes it great browsing for home buyers who are in a hurry and looking for a more condensed version of the listing details. And for those who prefer photos over video, Instagram allows agents to post up to 10 pictures per post, making it a cinch for buyers to swipe through and get a good feel for the home they’re looking at.
Instagram Stories are short, 15-second or less photos and videos that expire after 24 hours. The ephemeral nature of this format makes it a great tool for sharing temporary statuses. For home buyers, Stories should be your go-to place for getting to know potential real estate agents. Stories allow agents to share a bit about their personal lives and let their personalities shine through. It’s important to take the time to find a realtor who is well qualified with a proven track record, but you also need to trust and get along with the. After all, they are the person who is going to guide you through one of the most significant transactions of your life.
Stories are also a great way to find out about open houses in your area, and many agents will post a brief walk-through of the home on their Instagram account. These videos can help you decide if the home interests you. You can share the Story with your agent right on Instagram. You and your agent can attend the open house or arrange a walk-through at a more convenient time.
Sometimes, Instagram Stories will link to longer videos housed on IGTV which you can view simply by swiping up from the Story. This is a handy place to find longer videos of homes that are currently for sale, giving you an intimate inside look at the space. Think of these videos as an opportunity to do a “virtual walk-through,” which is especially important for those living out of town/out of state and relocating to a new area. You can’t always just jump in the car and check out a house, but a well-produced video can give you enough information to decide if your real estate agent should be doing just that.
Use Pinterest When You’ve Narrowed It Down a Bit
A big part of the home buying process is envisioning what a home could be, and there’s no better site to help inspire you than Pinterest. More of a social creative space than a true social “network,” Pinterest allows users to discover all types of ideas in a picture-based format. You can then “pin” posts that interest you to different category boards for quick and easy access later. The site is known for its DIY inspiration for everything from home improvement and decor to cooking to fashion to writing.
With a plethora of before, during, and after pictures on every conceivable home repair, upgrade, or change, you’re certain to find inspiration and guidance for any project you’re considering in your new home. If you found a home you love, but just can’t get excited about that wallpaper, those cabinets, or that kitchen backsplash, don’t write the whole house off just yet, because changing it from “meh” to “oh man!” might be easier than you think. It certainly is true that there are many things about a home that can be a deal breaker for buyers, but often times there is a really simple fix that you simply didn’t know about. With Pinterest, it’s easier to figure out what really is and isn’t a deal breaker when buying a new house.
Another great feature of Pinterest is that while the site is photo-based, the pins lead back to a host website with even more information. So if you’re looking at a picture of upgraded smart home lighting, it may lead you to an interview with the local electrician who specializes in those upgrades. Just like clicking on a picture of vegan pizza will lead you to the full recipe, so you can prepare it for your housewarming party. Let the photos inspire you, then let the videos, articles, and blogs they link to guide you through completion.
Buying With The Cyr Team
The Cyr Team delivers superior client care to those looking to buy or sell real estate. We educate, advise, and guide our clients through one of the biggest transactions of their lives by bringing a structured, process-driven methodology to build consistency and clarity in a real estate transaction. Located in SE Pennsylvania, we are licensed in PA, DE, and NJ to better serve the tri-state area.
The Cyr Team uses their social media platforms to guide, inform, and inspire buyers. We provide content on all these platforms so that you can feel confident in who we are when you choose us, find and share homes you’d like to see, and get inspired on how to make your new home your dream home.