We hope this Tuesday morning finds everyone doing well and enjoying the recent break from heat waves in our region! We wanted to take the time to address one of our most recent frustrations.

In our conversations with buyers and sellers, we've heard a lot of people refer to sites like Trulia and Zillow as a go-to source for everything in real estate. These sites are set up very nicely and they certainly do present information in an easy-to-read format. Many people like to go to them to get an idea of what their house is worth, or to see the history of a home that has been for sale. Of course they have a home search feature also and other suggested readings.

However, please be mindful of the fact that there is no guarantee that the information you see on internet sites like this is accurate. Those sites get their information from the database to which real estate agents have direct access- the Multiple Listing Service. We do not know how often they update this information, however we can tell you that we receive many, many phone calls and emails each year from people who see a house on internet websites that is already sold. And we don't mean just sold in the last several months- but several years ago. Clearly, this is not the most up to date information.

Additionally, sellers who are trying to determine the value of their home get a false sense of security by viewing the stats and charts these websites provide. We can assure you that any estimation of value that is given to you about your house by an internet website does not take into consideration some very important factors such as its interior condition, neighborhood trends and market fluctuations in your area.

Essentially, our message is that no fancy mathematic calcuation can replace the innate knowledge that an experienced real estate agent posesses. So if you are a buyer or a seller and you are looking for something at all related to real estate, save yourself some time, energy and money by speaking to an agent before relying on third party websites!