The Internet is an increasingly popular tool for home searches, according to the latest annual survey of home buyers and sellers conducted by the National Association of Realtors trade group. About 77 percent of home buyers reported that they used the Internet to search for a home – a 3 percent increase since 2004, according to the 2005 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers. In 1995, about 2 percent of home buyers said they used the Internet to search for a home. About 24 percent of buyers said they first learned about the home they purchased on the Internet, a sharp jump from 15 percent in 2004 and 2 percent in 1997. In finding a real estate professional, 44 percent of buyers were referred by a friend, neighbor or relative, 11 percent used an agent from a previous transaction, 7 percent found an agent on the Internet, 7 percent met at an open house and 6 percent saw contact information on a "for sale" sign. The report is based on 7,813 responses to a survey mailed to about 145,00...
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