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The Do's and Don'ts of Searching for Real Estate Online

Updated: Sep 14, 2023

When it comes to finding a new home, most people start their search online. This is the easiest and quickest way to get an overview of what's available in your area. But there are some things you should keep in mind when searching for real estate online. Here are the do's and don'ts of online real estate searches.

Do's and Don'ts

There's no doubt that the internet has made the process a whole lot easier. You can search for properties from the comfort of your own home, and you can even find realtors online. But with all of the options out there, it can be tricky to know what to do – and what to avoid.

When you're looking for real estate, there are a few things you should keep in mind. Here are some tips on how to search for properties on the Internet:


  • Use reliable sites: be sure to use reliable websites. is a good place to start, as it is the official site of the Canadian Real Estate Association. Other good sources of information include: and

  • Talk to your agent: since your agent is actively working in the local market, if you describe the type of property you are looking for this will allow them to keep an eye out for opportunities that come up in the market.

  • Set up a listing search: ask your realtor to set up a listing search for you. Your realtor will ask you some questions about the property you’re looking for, your must-haves and deal breakers versus those things that are just nice to have. Using this information they can set up a custom search to send you properties that fit your criteria on a daily or weekly basis.

  • Compare prices and features: compare the prices and features of each property to get a sense of what kinds of properties are available within your budget. By comparing different properties you can hone in on what’s most important for you in your ideal property.

  • Get more info: make sure you contact your realtor to get more information about properties you are interested in. This will allow you to know if a property is still available, when offers are being reviewed, and the good, the bad and the ugly of a property you’re interested in.


  • Just rely on pictures: Make sure to read the descriptions of the properties including supplements, floor plans, and lot size. Photo’s can be deceiving and make a property look a lot bigger or more functional than it actually is.

  • Contact the listing agent: the listing agent has both a duty and an incentive to exclusively represent the seller’s best interests. You’re better off contacting your agent if you have any questions about a property because they will give you a more balanced and accurate perspective –without the spin.

  • Hesitate to get a second opinion: ask for a second opinion from friends and family. They may be able to provide some insights based on their own experience in buying, selling and owning property. This is especially helpful if you have a friend or family member in the construction industry.

When looking for real estate online, it's important to be aware of the do's and don'ts. Make sure to use trustworthy websites like or, and contact your realtor for more information. Compare prices and features between different properties, but be careful not to rely on pictures and listing descriptions alone. When in doubt, talk to your realtor.


I am a Victoria based local realtor with eXp Realty. My commitment to honesty, integrity, loyalty and hard work have been important pillars for me because they drive a high standard of excellent service for my clients. Helping you realize your dream is my goal!

I service Vancouver Island, but my focus is on: Victoria, Sooke, Saanich, Malahat, Shawnigan Lake, Cobble Hill, Duncan, and the rest of the Cowichan Valley.



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