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Understanding Homebot Home Search's Insights for Smart, Fair, and Weak Buys
Understanding Homebot Home Search's Insights for Smart, Fair, and Weak Buys

Homebot Home Search's personalized insights help buyers understand affordability and investment strategies. Read more here.

Written by Leia Schultz
Updated over a week ago

What are Homebot Home Search's Insights?

Homebot Home Search lets buyers browse homes for sale with a smarter, simpler twist: They'll see personalized financial insights on each listing. These insights make it easy to understand affordability and investment potential based on the listing’s data, budget, and market trends. Depending on those factors, a listing can be a smart, fair, or weak buy for a buyer at that time.

Keep reading to learn more about how Homebot Home Search calculates if a home is a smart, fair, or weak buy. Jump into this article for an overview on Homebot Home Search.

How Insights Are Calculated

People using Homebot Home Search get to see helpful financial insights on every listing without having to do any math. These insights are based on the listing’s data, market trends, and national averages. And it gets better: every buyer can choose to update the profile that Homebot uses to make calculations so that the smart, fair, or weak buy insights are even more personalized and helpful.

Clients update the Your Profile tab in the insights panel to specify:

  • Current monthly costs. For renters, this is their monthly rent. For homeowners, this is how much they spend on their house per month (including principal and interest, PMI, insurance, property taxes, HOA fees, and maintenance).

  • Max monthly budget. This is the maximum amount someone is willing to spend on their home each month.

  • Down payment. The amount paid up front when purchasing a home.

  • Years in home. An estimation of how many years someone expects to stay in a home.

  • Rentable nights. How many nights per month, if any, someone is willing to rent their home on Airbnb.

First-time home buyers, renters, or clients without a home in a Loan Officer's database get started with default information based on national averages.

Homeowners that are already in a Loan Officer's database begin with defaults based on their current home loan details in their home digest.

Pro tip: Tell clients to update the Your Profile tab in the insights panel as soon as they begin searching so they can see their personalized information on the very first listing they look at! They can update this info any time while browsing properties and Homebot will handle all the math automatically.

Based on the buyer's Your Profile tab, Homebot makes the following calculations to provide a smart, fair, or weak buy score for a given listing at this time:

Over or under budget: Sometimes a buyer’s budget can be flexible depending on the home. Homebot helps make budget strategy clearer by showing the difference between the buyer's maximum monthly budget and the estimated monthly costs for the listing.

Estimated monthly costs: Homebot helps buyers think about the total cost of ownership, beyond just principal and interest. The estimated monthly cost for a listing sums the estimated monthly mortgage payment, PMI (if applicable), and the national averages for HOA fees, home insurance, property taxes, and maintenance.

Savings of owning compared to renting: Think of this like a rent-versus-buy calculator, minus the manual math! Using the buyer's current monthly costs in the Your Profile tab, Homebot calculates how much they might spend renting over the number of years they plan to stay in their current place. At the same time, Homebot calculates what it would cost to own the listed home based on estimated monthly costs for that home, but keeping that same number of years constant. Next, Homebot estimates what the home could sell for at the end of that time period (factoring in selling fees, remaining loan balance, and current inflation rate). Finally, Homebot compares the overall savings or loss to determine if the buyer will save money long-term.

Expected sale price: Homebot uses market temperature for the zip code of the listed home to estimate a listing price for that future sale.

Based on these calculations, Homebot Home Search returns personalized insights for a buyer on each listing. These insights are color-coded so buyers quickly understand affordability and investment opportunities.

  • A green bothead means the home could be cheaper than renting long term (or for current homeowners, staying at their current home) and within their monthly budget.

  • An orange bothead means the home could be either more expensive than what someone can afford based on their monthly budget or more expensive than renting long term (or for current homeowners, staying at their current home). Getting from orange to green requires a larger budget or a longer estimated stay in the home.

  • A red bothead means that there could be some financial risk if the buyer chooses to purchase this home. Based on the current financial information in the Your Profile tab, the listing’s details, and current market trends, Homebot calculates that buying this home could be over budget and could cost more than renting (or for homeowners, staying at their current home) in the long term.

  • A pink bothead means there's been an error with the tool. In most cases, it's an authentication error, which can happen if a client hasn't recently opened their Homebot digest or market report. If this issue persists, contact Homebot's Support team for help.

A buyer's information on their profile will apply to listings in the Homebot Home Search portal. The insights panel is interactive and updates calculations as buyers use it to browse live listings.

Buyers clicking around the insights panel will find cost estimates and details for total transparency into the costs of homeownership.

Best of all: the insights panel makes it easy for clients to send you a message when they have questions or are interested in next steps.

Need more support? Send us a chat using the pink message icon in the bottom right-hand corner!

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