House Shopping Rants #2: Less than informative websites
I realize that condo construction isn't really a web sort of business. It's fundamentally brick-and-mortar in a way that few businesses are. At the same time, developers are building websites for their developments, so they obviously see some value there. So why do so many of those websites suck so very, very badly?
Few websites contain more information than the print advertisements in New Homes & Condos. Some, and I'm looking at you, Sophia Condos, actually have less info on their website than in their print ads. Less! Nowhere on the web page does it even say *where* the development is going to be. But they do have that lovely flash intro of kaleidoscoping vaguely European things, so I guess that makes up for not having the slightest idea where I'd end up living if I bought a condo there. A map to the sales center, when the sales center is not on the actual build site is not an acceptable substitute for location information, Plaza Royale.
Pricing information is rare as hell, which is sort of to be expected. They want you to keep in mind that 'suites from $189K' advertised price instead of the reality that anything larger than your couch is actually closer to $300K. But would it be so hard for more sites to have floor plans available? Preferably on a page that doesn't require individually clicking on each cutesy suite name to load the corresponding painfully slow PDF file?
Here's another fun idea--how about some idea where the complex is in the development process? It'd sure be helpful to have an idea whether prospective move-ins were this year, next year or in 2027 when they finally sell enough of those damned units to start construction, no? I don't need firm dates, but some ballpark figure would be nice. I know they have them, because if you find newspaper or condo mag articles on the developments, they'll list them there. So why not on the website?