5 ways to simplify — and speed up! — your home-shopping experience

Narrowing your search and trusting the experts could help concentrate and expedite your home-buying process

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Deciding you’re ready to buy is a big step, but it’s not the last decision you’ll face on your journey to a new home. From browsing listings on Zillow® to selecting your mortgage provider, there are lots of choices that can clutter up your home-buying process, well before the moving boxes do. 

We’ve compiled a list of ways to reduce the mental noise and help you focus on exactly what matters to you most, so you can quickly find — and win — a home you love. 

1. Clean up your search by hiding the listings you’re no longer considering.

There’s something for everyone, but not everything is for you. If you find yourself becoming distracted by a home that’s not the one for you, hide it. The recently released “hide homes” tool now appears on each Zillow listing. Simply press the “hide home” icon and the listing won’t appear in future search results. By focusing on the remaining listings, you can hone in on what you’re looking for and decrease distractions. If you decide to revisit the property, your hidden homes can be found — and shown — under “more” on the Zillow app.

2. Don’t just send listings back and forth with your friend or partner. Use SharePlay to search together.

When you’re house hunting with another person, it can be hard to keep track of who likes which property and why. Saved homes can get lost in your texts, and it’s easy to mix up  homes when you’re sharing listings with each other. It may be helpful to review home listing pages together using SharePlay while on FaceTime on your iPhone or iPad. You’ll be able to agree on, or rule out, listings in real time. Not only could this simplify your search, but it could also get you into a home faster.

Zillow + Apple SharePlay

3. Prioritize showings by comparing homes before ever seeing them.

The market is still competitive for buyers, especially for the lowest-priced homes, so home seekers interested in a property should see it quickly. This could be tough if you are trying to fit multiple listings into your schedule. On the Zillow app, you can compare up to five listings by selecting “compare” in the top right corner of your saved homes tab on the app.

You’ll be able to look at home features side by side, making it easier to prioritize which homes you most want to tour.

4. Find an agent who knows the local market. 

Once you’ve narrowed down your potential home choices, finding a local agent can further expedite and simplify the decision-making process. Agents can help answer questions about the listing and craft a competitive offer. They’ll also be able to guide you through the notoriously complicated closing process, either in person or digitally.

5. Use a checklist to keep track of your progress.

Even with using the tips above to declutter your home search, there are a lot of things to keep in mind while buying. Try using a checklist to keep track of your steps along the way. The checklist also makes it easier to share information with the various people you’ll meet while on your home-buying journey, such as your mortgage lender.

Home buying can be complicated, but using tools designed to help you find “the one” can help get you into a home you love with a little less stress. Learn more by checking out our buyers guide.

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