Property listing apps are becoming the best online home buying sites, as many are broadening their services to include realtors and financing. They can quickly connect you with local help or assist in your agent-free search. The same apps you use to browse for your dream home can actually help get you into it.
The best property selling sites give you information about the market and local real estate. Selling through an online site can also save you thousands in agent fees. Check out the top home buying and selling websites.
Zillow has been one of the best online home buying sites for more than 15 years. The platform has become the single most popular real estate website worldwide since it was established in 2006. Zillow receives more online visitors daily than the three websites ranked behind it combined.
Zillow is the best online house buying site because it can convert window shoppers into homebuyers. Each listing on the site has detailed information about the property, scheduled open houses, and access to real estate agents.
Zillow created “Zestimates,” which are the company’s estimation of a property’s value. While it is not an official appraisal, zestimates can give homeowners an idea of what their home could be listed as in the current market.
The company’s ultimate goal is to cut out the “middlemen” in the homebuying process. The website is working towards being a one-stop-shop for listing, browsing, and buying properties.
One of the oldest and best property selling sites is the official website of The National Association of Realtors (NAR), which first started in 1996. The application follows the NAR’s ethical code and makes it simple to connect to a trusted, local real estate agent.
Whereas Zillow allows ‘For Sale by Owner’ listings and contacts, Realtor only advertises official listings and licensed agents. If owners are interested in selling, Realtor can connect them with industry professionals.
Like other good websites for buying houses, Realtor pulls listings from multiple real estate professionals’ databases. It also provides information about school ratings, the local market, housing trends, and top-rated agents.
Compared to other top home buying websites, Opendoor is a baby. The online company started in 2014 with the mission to make buying and selling easier for consumers.
Buyers can browse listings and buy homes directly through the site. The company offers unmatched benefits like:
- Buying a home to hold if sellers have financing delays.
- Buying the home back within 90 days if the buyer changes their mind.
Sellers who sell their property directly to Opendoor can receive an offer instantly and payment within days. The company can handle repairs and have flexible move-out dates, so sellers can avoid paying two mortgages at once.
Sellers can also list on the website with help from representatives. Opendoor has a 5 percent fee, which is one point less than traditional closing fees.
The best home buying sites have lower fees, and Redfin has genuine savings for buyers and sellers. It provides many of the same basic realtor services at a fraction of the traditional price.
Real estate agents each have a commission fee that can range between 2.5 and 3 percent of the purchase price. Sellers are responsible for paying both agents’ fees, which can total 5 to 6 percent of the purchase price.
Redfin charges a 1.5 percent listing fee, but it can lower it to 0.5 percent if the seller also buys on the website. Owners can cut their closing costs in half by selling through Redfin and save thousands of dollars.
Trulia is actually owned by the best online house buying site, Zillow, but it offers more insight into the neighborhood. Buyers from out of the area will find helpful local details, such as school ratings and crime statistics. The site also has a “What Locals Say” section for residents to dish about their city.
Parents can find better school metrics on Trulia than most other sites. Each assigned school has a GreatSchools rating and a rating from other parents.
Buyers can also get an idea of what to expect for housing expenses by checking the utility company for the property. Not all homeowners can choose providers, and knowing the company they would be stuck with could influence their decision.
Many of the best home buying websites let users filter listings by foreclosure status. However, buyers who only want a foreclosed home should use the website exclusively with distressed properties. Buyers can filter listings by type, such as:
- Pre-foreclosure, foreclosure, and HUD property
- Tax lien, bankruptcy, and short sale
- City-owned and sheriff sales
- As-is deals and fixer-uppers
Foreclosure.com is the country’s biggest listing website for foreclosures and bankruptcy listings. Listings have photos, detailed descriptions, and information about when they go to auction.
The membership cost is the main difference between Foreclosure.com and other sites. To view the detailed information, users will need to sign up for a $40 monthly subscription.
The best online home buying sites allow sellers and buyers to cut costs by cutting out the middlemen. The main purpose of this site is in its name, For Sale by Owner. Some owners prefer the control of selling their house without an agent, while others like the savings.
Real estate agents can charge 2.5 to 3 percent of the purchase price as commission, and the seller is responsible for paying both agents’ fees.
FSBO.com has two packages:
- FSBO Package – Sellers can advertise their listing for six months, and their listing can have one video and unlimited photos. This package is about $100.
- MLS Package – FSBO.com has MLS access and can list sellers’ properties on it. The MLS Package gives listings maximum exposure on some of the best home buying sites like Zillow and Redfin. This package is about $400.
FSBO.com has home sales documents for each state, and they have sale signs and marketing material for a fee. FSBO packages can include real estate contracts, disclosure statements, contract for deed, and more.