Home Buying

Why Shopping for Homes on Craigslist Is a Bad Idea

Just say no.

Craigslist is good for a lot of things: buying a secondhand couch, looking for part-time work, and scoping out free goodies. What is Craigslist not good for? Home buyers. Here are a few things to consider before you look for homes on that Godforsaken website.

Mispriced Homes

You’re looking for a home within your price range, so naturally, you sort through homes from lowest to highest. Unfortunately for you, you need to wade through six pages of homes listed for a dollar before you can get to anything relevant to your search. Because Craigslist doesn’t have specific formatting or strict rules, anyone can list homes for any price (even if it’s grossly inaccurate) just to be placed as a top result. 

Poor Search

The filters in the Craigslist search are bare bones. You can search by number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the type of house, zip code, and only a few other scant options. Don’t limit yourself to filters that don’t immediately direct you to properties you’re interested in. With Realty.com’s advanced search, you have the power to search for homes by all of Craigslist’s search terms plus: lot size, year built, HOA fees, days on the market, price changes, new listings, and so much more.

Sketchy Sellers

With Craigslist, you never really know who you’re talking to. Because the emails listed are anonymized, it’s increasingly difficult to verify the legitimacy of a seller and their listing. That means you’re more likely to deal with unprofessional sales tactics. It also means you’re more likely to fall for a scam. With Realty.com’s trusted agents, you can rest assured that your dream home is handled by a real estate professional.

Lacking Context

You find a home that piques your interest, but where is the information? With Craigslist ads, sellers can post no details and be as vague as they want. That means posts with bad or blurry pictures, no address listed, no information about the school system, or even basic infrastructure details such as the type of heating and cooling systems. A lack of information could mean more time wasted visiting properties that don’t fit your needs.

Annoying to Read

Let’s face it, reading titles “*****LiKe ThIs******” or “LIKE THIS!!!!!!!” gets old pretty quickly. Avoid the headaches of the Craigslist dumpster fire and visit Realty.com for a sane home search experience that’s easy, intuitive, and enjoyable.

Need more tips for buying a home? Click here.

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Raquel Guarino

Raquel Guarino is a writer for Realty.com and Help.com. She currently lives in Austin, Texas.

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