Five ways to research a real estate listing online

The internet has revolutionized the way we research and gather information, especially when it comes to real estate.

Gone are the days of relying solely on print advertisements and driving around neighborhoods to find your dream property. Today, you can access a wealth of information right from the comfort of your home.

In this article, we will explore five effective ways to research or look up an address of a real estate listing online, helping you make an informed decision when it comes to buying or renting a property.

1) Use popular real estate websites

Your first port of call will probably be popular real estate websites.

Explore major real estate portals

Real estate websites like Zillow,, and Trulia are treasure troves of information for prospective buyers and renters. These platforms provide detailed property listings, including photos, descriptions, price history, and property tax information.

Additionally, they offer user-friendly tools such as mortgage calculators, market reports, and neighborhood insights. By leveraging these platforms, you can gather essential information on a particular property, helping you make a well-informed decision.

Check out local real estate websites

While major real estate portals are an excellent starting point, don’t overlook the value of local real estate websites. Many smaller, region-specific websites offer in-depth knowledge of local markets and often provide additional data not available on larger platforms. Researching local real estate websites can help you uncover hidden gems and give you a more nuanced understanding of the area.

2) Harness the power of Google Maps and Street View

Your next stop might be Google Maps and Street View.

Explore the neighborhood virtually

Google Maps and Street View provide a unique opportunity to explore a neighborhood without physically visiting the location.

With Street View, you can take a virtual walk around the area, gauging the condition of nearby properties, streets, and amenities. This can help you get a feel for the neighborhood, as well as identify potential issues such as traffic congestion, construction projects, or proximity to noisy establishments.

Analyze public transportation and commute times

Google Maps also enables you to assess the public transportation options and estimate commute times from the property to your workplace, schools, or other essential destinations. This information is vital, as it can influence your overall satisfaction with the property and its location.

3) Research local schools and education options

if you have children, you’ll want to research local schools and education options.

Identify nearby schools and their ratings

For families with children, the quality of local schools is a critical factor when researching a real estate listing. Websites like and offer comprehensive information on schools, including ratings, test scores, and parent reviews. By researching the schools in the area, you can ensure that your child receives a quality education.

Explore local colleges and universities

If you’re considering furthering your education or if you have college-bound children, researching nearby colleges and universities is essential. Many institutions have online campus maps and virtual tours, allowing you to explore their facilities and learn about the programs they offer.

4) Investigate local crime rates and safety

It is also important to check you are moving to a safe area.

Access crime data online

Understanding the safety of a neighborhood is crucial when researching a real estate listing. Many online resources, such as and, offer up-to-date crime data and safety scores for specific areas.

By analyzing this information, you can gain insight into the prevalence of different types of crime and the overall safety of a neighborhood.

Reach out to local law enforcement

For a more personalized assessment of neighborhood safety, consider contacting the local police department or neighborhood watch organization. These groups can provide valuable information on recent criminal activity, trends, and safety initiatives in the area.

5) Engage with local social media groups and online forums

See what you can learn from local online communities.

Join neighborhood-specific Facebook groups

Many neighborhoods and communities have dedicated Facebook groups, where residents discuss local events, issues, and share recommendations.

Joining these groups can offer valuable insights into the day-to-day life in a particular neighborhood, helping you get a feel for the community and its residents. Additionally, you can ask questions and solicit opinions from locals about a specific property or area.

Participate in online forums and message boards

Forums and message boards like and Reddit offer a wealth of information on various topics, including real estate. By participating in these online communities, you can gather firsthand experiences and opinions from other users who are familiar with the area in question.

This can help you learn about potential concerns or benefits of a specific property or neighborhood that may not be readily apparent through other online research methods.

Gather the information you need to make the right decision

By using popular real estate websites, harnessing the power of Google Maps and Street View, investigating local schools and education options, assessing neighborhood safety, and engaging with local social media groups and online forums, you can gather crucial information to make an informed decision when buying or renting a property.

Armed with this knowledge, you’ll be well-equipped to find the perfect home or investment property that meets your needs and desires.