EUGENE, Ore. (KMTR) – A local realty company has recently rolled out new resources for interested home buyers hoping to make things a bit easier.
Q-R codes are more widely known among those with smart phones. They look like a barcode and can be found in many stores for discounts or more item information. Anyone can scan them as long as they have a readable application on their device.
Remax Integrity has already started placing QR codes on “For Sale” signs across Eugene. Interested home buyers who scan the code are taken to a website that has all the property information one would otherwise find on a paper flyer but more. Among the “3 bedroom, 2 baths,” descriptions, sites will offer 360 degree virtual tours, the 10 nearest properties for sale among other companies and more. Consumers can also “like” a location to find homes for sale around that specific property such as schools, churches and parks.
Kevin Simrin is a broker/owner for Remax and said the work for the company hasn’t been so much in creating the QR code, but rather formatting the directed site to whatever device one is using. Many sites that are behind a QR code are web-formatted, meaning on a cell phone, the images and information is squished and nearly un-readable.
Among those advantages, Simrin said the QR codes are greener than the paper flyers.
“Often times they’re not even there. The amount of ink, waste and paper that goes into them and a lot of people pick them up, they want the information, they crinkle them up, throw them away and they’re gone. With this you have it saved to your phone and pictures are just a click away,” Simrin said.
Web pages also offer up to the minute information whereas the paper flyers would have to be reprinted in order to get new information out.
For those who don’t have smart phones, a text message option is also available. One can text message a short code to the listed number and instantly receive the same information that can be found on the webpage.
Agents are also posting foreclosure and short sale listings through QR codes too so buyers and neighbors can see listed properties in Lane County easily. In addition, they’re a great marketing tool – so easy one agent left QR code flyers on windshields last week with his website posted at the bottom.
In order to prevent foreclosure altogether, a new program called “SAVE” allows home buyers to opt-in for job loss protection.
The buyer pays about $500 dollars at the time of escrow and is covered for the first two years of their new ownership. If the buyer were to lose his or her job, the program provides up to six months of mortgage payments or $1,800 dollars worth. If he or she were to get a job before the 24 month max, the assistance he or she lost another job.
No one expects to their job, which is why Simrin said the protection is a good “just-in-case” plan. The majority of home buyers don’t end up needing to use SAVE.
“Occasionally we’ll get a buyers that’s just like ‘I just am so nervous I am going to lose my job, I don’t think I’m going to, but whatever’ so our agent might introduce this to them as an option
Clients who have already needed to rely on the program said it worked exactly how they expected. They were able to climb out of their financial trouble and keep their home.
Besides providing mortgage money, the program also offers financial counseling and more.
Sellers, too, can include the job loss protection in their property to boost buyer interest and sale value.
“They can actually advertise it as one of the things they’re selling with the home,” Simrin said.
The program is intended to get people buying again but also to save those same buyers if and when they start to lose their home. Realtors do not suggest anyone who thinks they might lose their job to go out and buy a home, but if they’re on the fence, the program is an extra incentive. They stress SAVE is not insurance but rather a protection plan.