HomeSearch. com Short Outline.
HomeSearch.com is an online auction, which features bank-owned properties and mostly short sales in the real estate business. The company was introduced by Solutionstar Realty Services LLC with the headquarters based in Lewisville, TX, and is not accredited by the Better Business Bureau, though it lists 7 closed complaints from the customers concerning mostly sale issues, and claims all of them were resolved.
The website brings together homeowners, wishing to sell their accommodation and real estate investors, looking for profitable deals. The sellers list their offers and auctioneers are encouraged to make bids for them. The developers of the site claim that the major target of the service is to make the home buying easier, however in the internet there are many negative reviews about the site and their work principles, which breeds doubts of whether it’s really as easy as it looks.
How It Works.
Registration of your account on the website is free of charge both for the sellers and buyers. You’ll have to give some contact information, like name, email, etc, and agree to the Terms and Conditions of the service; otherwise you won’t be able to participate in the auction.
The next step to proceed is choosing the type of property to buy or sell. The website offers the following sections of real estate: bank owned property, short sales, single and multi – family homes, condos and townhouses, land, short sales and luxury coming soon. In order to save time searching you can put down the zip code of the necessary area, valid address, or the ID of the real estate. There will appear a list of offers matching your search parameters with a short description of every accommodation. In order to view more thorough features of particular property, simply click on “View Details” and you’ll see the time remaining before the offer ends, its occupancy, its reservation price, and more. Bidding is fast and easy, you just have to press one button and wait an email informing you of whether your bid became the highest or not.
Be aware of the fact that sellers are able to define the reservation price. That is the amount of money that has to be reached in order to buy the property. So basically even if your bid turns out the highest one, it doesn’t guarantee you the right to purchase the property if the reservation price is not met.
The website claims to base their work on three major principles, which are the ease of use, broad deal selection, and transparency. All together they assure you can find thousands of exclusive offers and bid on them easily and in clear auction format.
How Much It Costs.
Although it’s free to sign up for thewebsite, it will charge you $2,500 as soon as you register to any of the available auctions. This sum is held by the service until the moment when the auction ends, and in the case you didn’t buy any property there, money gets refunded back to you.
On the other hand if you do purchase property on this auction, the service will charge the so called Auction Fee on the top of the previously paid $2,500, which makes 5% out of the amount of the auction winning bid.
According to the website the Homesearch.com started its business in 1998, however it’s only the date of their URL registration, and the company seems to be active only since 2013.
The customers mostly leave negative reviews about their experience with the service with the often complaints on deceitful sale and bidding process. The problem is that people applying to the website are usually inattentive to details, and in this very case it greatly matters, and here’s why.
The Event Agreement states that “the Auctioneer may open bidding on any Property by placing a bid on behalf of the Seller, and may further bid on behalf of the Seller up to the amount of the Reserve Price by placing successive or consecutive bids”. It means that sellers can actually also bid as many times they want to make the price closer to the reserve. Moreover some customers report the so called ghost bidders (the website itself), who are determined to create demand and make the real buyers raise their bids every time. Such methods of work are deceitful to customers and are able to spoil the reputation of the service so that other people won’t find it trustworthy.
- First of all please keep in mind that the service charges additional 5% fee from every winning bid, so the sum you’ll have to pay in the end of the auction equals your winning bid + its 5% fee + $2,500 you pay once you register to the auction.
- Also don’t hurry up raising your bids, because the service seems to deliberately create demand in auctions to make you offering more and more money until you reach the reserve sum. Moreover the sellers are allowed to make bids themselves.
- The website encourages bank owned and short sales. That means that the property put on sale may be in poor condition, so purchasing it involves some risks as you might not know all the details of the accommodation’s condition until you actually buy it.
- The last but not the least factor is that the website was introduced by the Solutionstar Realty Services LLC, however it seems to be connected with NationStar Mortgage LLC, which has a poor reputation based on reviews of their customers.