The listings you will see on this site are essentially from 2 sources. They are listings entered and/or promoted by individual agents. I don't believe you will find much misrepresentation revolving around this source. The other source is other websites. Trulia is an aggregator of various real estate information. Much of which comes from RealtyTrac. The outside sources are not always complete or they have dated information. When you view this information try and check to see if they post when the listing data was originally posted. If it's more than a week or 2 then there is a high chance that the information is outdated. Trulia cannot update another sites data. My peeve about old data is that when sited from an outside source Trulia should highlight the original date posted. This can be misleading.
As far as the tactics of Queens Realtors I believe it is the exception and not the rule. Old habits die hard. Older brokers may be training some agents with old school approaches and these new agents don't really know anything else. Eventually they see how more professional agents deal with the public and they change.
Don't get discouraged! I'm an older agent but have advocated for a more transparent way of working with buyers and sellers. Older but not 'old school'.
I would be happy to represent you. I believe we will have a great time and find you a home more quickly than you would expect since I only work with a very limited number of buyers at one time. It's like a crash course in buying. Additionally I am a NYS Certified Residential Appraiser. When we find the home you are interested in I will be able to provide you with an accurate opinion of the properties value.
In the meantime please contact me. I will provide you with a free account from which you can see all current listings and current status'. It will also allow you to save/highlight properties you are interested in and send me notes about the properties, your schedule, etc. For both sales and appraisals I cover Queens and Nassau counties and have been doing so for approx. 25 years.
NYS Certified Residential Appraiser
Licensed R.E. Agent
Century21 Yve R.E.
I nerd a couple of bits of info: first name, last name; email address and what you are looking for... The rest is up to you.
First...it's illegal to actually advertise a property that does not exist. Sometimes the property may have sold by the time you contact the agent but if the property is a fabrication, you can contact the local real estate board and have that person fined. Their behavior doesn't help anybody in the business.
As for showing places that are too high priced....man, this is a common complaint and so ridiculous. I get paid no matter which property you buy so why would I want to upset you or push you into a place that takes away your disposable income...but too many people are greedy, and realtors are not unique to this vice. You would think the agent cares about referrals and their reputation, at the minimum, but, no.
Craigslist can be huge for finding 'by owner' properties and other realty listed properties. BUT, because it is FREE, and has become quite popular, it is slowly being overrun with scam artists and 'professionals' who are less than scrupulous.
Here's my advice: Use realtor.com to get an idea of what is for sale in Queens. ALL of those properties are real and will have the number of the agent listing the house. Next, you should really find a buyer's agent who knows Queens to help you because generally they get paid from the Seller and don't cost you a penny.
How to find one: First, ask the friends and fam avenue. Next, check reputable reference sites like Linkedin, AngiesList, and Yelp.
And the final test for a buyer's agent: Meet him or her. See if you vibe well with them. Because if they will not listen to you or insist on showing you things you can't afford, you'll know at the first meeting. If they don't seem to understand your preferences, again, it's like meeting somebody at a BBQ and turning to your spouse and you say, "what's up with him?" If you encounter that feeling...walk! If you go through reference channels, you should meet a solid person within a few tries, I promise.