SEATTLE – June 30, 2017 – The number of buyers making offers sight unseen – meaning they haven't physically visited the property – is on the rise, according to a survey of recent home buyers conducted by real estate brokerage Redfin.
Thirty-three percent of respondents in 11 major markets say they made an offer on at least one house sight unseen. These types of offers are more common when working with foreign buyers and in markets where homes are selling quickly, real estate professionals say.
For many buyers, advanced technology has made a physical in-home visit less necessary since they can have many of their questions answered virtually. An increasing use of 3-D photos, video tours and virtual reality give some buyers enough confidence to purchase a home without an in-person showing. According to The Wall Street Journal, some real estate pros are conducting property walkthroughs with long-distance buyers remotely via FaceTime, Skype or WhatsApp. And some agents are working with technology companies to create 3-D photo and video tours within the virtual reality space to make long-distance buyers feel like they're at the property in person.