How vital is internet access?

Inspired in part by this post at the Center for Realtor Technology comes this week’s (probably month’s) poll – How Important is Internet Access in your next home?

99% of my clients deem internet access to be an absolute, non-negotiable necessity, on par with needing three bedrooms and two baths, or needing to be within 20 minutes of the UVA Hospital because that is what the residency requirements state (Match Day is approaching!) In the area surrounding Charlottesville and beyond the Urban Ring of Albemarle, one cannot safely assume that high speed internet access is ubiquitous – this is often very surprising to those relocating to the area.

One would think that the MLS would offer this as a field by which we could limit our searches, but alas, not yet. For now, if a home has cable, assuming (and then verifying) that it has broadband access is safe. Calling the local phone company to see about DSL is another step, but often they aren’t 100% certain as to where their service extends. I have not yet had a client use Wild Blue satellite service, so I cannot vouch for that service. So … how important is internet access to your home search?

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  2. TrvlnMn March 9, 2007 at 20:32

    Before I moved here from out of state, knowing I would be losing a lot of things about large cities that I love. I checked with the phone company to make sure the place I was renting had a high speed internet option. Ironically cable wasn’t an option but DSL was. Right now internet is a requirement for me (that might not always be the case however).

    I don’t pay for cable or Direct Tv, and only get NBC29 via antenna (and the reception is spotty at best) and I’m no fan of the local stations. I also enjoy non-music radio, get poor local reception, and like to listen to several stations in other states (and countries) that I can only get online. So internet access is where I spend my “entertainment” dollars.

    For Example – If you like audio theater KPCC, a public radio station in CA, broadcasts a weekly series called “The Plays The Thing” which presents audio versions of 2 hour stage plays (often with well known actors – since they’re in L.A.). Live on Friday and available with realplayer the rest of the week. Then the BBC has several weekly series the Friday Play, the Saturday Play, and several others Monday thru Thursday.

  3. Stefan Swanepoel March 13, 2007 at 11:59

    Seldom has the introduction of a single strategy been as important as the Internet. Today almost every single facet of real estate brokerage being attacked, altered or replaced with technology. The totality of technology and the Internet unquestionably has the combined power to fundamentally change the real estate industry.

  4. Matt Cohen March 19, 2007 at 15:38

    Information put into the fields (ideally a broadband y/n, then a text field with service descriptions) will only be as good as what the Realtor knows. Worse yet, this is information that changes over time (especially in a slower market). So, ideally, the MLS would work with local broadband providers to integrate with web services with information about the connection available to the home. Active listings could be regularly updated via this mechanism. That way the information would always be both as correct as reported by the provider and kept up to date.

  5. Jim Duncan March 19, 2007 at 16:14

    Matt –

    Thank you for visiting and commenting. I look to your company continually as a market leader.

    Now that is an interesting thought. Now to see if Embarq (sprint) and Comcast/Adelphia might be able to make that happen.