How to Find a Great Realtor to Run Your Property “Comparables” (Comps)

Establishing value on your property is critical. Skill number one above all other skills to master.

The most important aspects of being a real estate investor is the ability to establish value on houses or properties you are considering buying, wholesaling, or flipping. Irregardless of location, be it California, New York, Houston, or Dallas its a must know skill to learn in time.

But how do you master comping property if you do not have Multiple Listing Service (MLS) access? How can you practice and practice running comps (like I have until you breeze through it), looking at land, comparing variables like year built, location, lot square feet, bed and baths, subdivision and lastly what is the property next too? Is it next to a commercial center, stinky ranch or pig farm or a nice area with a creek or lake? These factors are important to know in learning to master running comps on property.

Before you can become proficient with running comps you need MLS access from a realtor if you are not one already. And this is how you do it. You want to find a realtor you know on a personal level, maybe a friend, friend of the family, or relative. If you don’t have a realtor on hand you need to make friends with one.

This is how you go about making friends and getting MLS access. Drive for dollars and find a vacant, boarded up house ones you want to consider buying or wholesaling. Find two or three, then call a few Realtors up tell them you are real estate buyer or investor and need a good realtor to buy through and run comps.

Start off only giving them a few addresses to comp then a week later give them a few more, meanwhile take them out to coffee get to know them, their likes dislikes, hobbies, etc. Form a relationship with them. A week later give them a few more comps to run, be sure the houses are in your actual buying areas of interest. In other words make sure its real comps of real houses. Its one way to get to know your platinum areas.

Phone your realtor talk to him or her about the houses he or she comped. Make the chat a casual conversation. Ask them if they would like you to refer them (realtor) to the sellers who want to list. Of course the realtor will say yes! Let them know not all sellers you meet are desperate or motivated sellers and some simply need a good realtor to list with.

Then when a seller does not want to sell ask them if they would like to talk to your realtor to see if listing is right for them. Call the Realtor and give them the seller’s name, phone, address, and the condition of the house. This will show the realtor you are serious. No one works for free. Keep track of those referrals maybe the realtor will give you a small finders fee once listed and sold, just don’t ask for one at this point. Your sole goal is MLS access! The gold standard of running comps.

Somewhere in the discussions you are giving them the comps to run, they start to get a bit overwhelmed at the extra work load of running the comps for you. This is what you want. They need to realize in the back of their minds without you mentioning it, they should just give you MLS access.

However, when you feel its a good time tell them you can “save them time buy getting MLS access as an “real estate assistant” or such, just whatever is easier for them” which they can ethically do. This is why, they have real estate assistants who run comps for them, look up properties on the MLS and help out in the office for them.

If you are giving them leads they are going to be more than happy to give you the access you need once you establish trust with them. It is wise to be working about 2-3 Realtors at once to see who is actually a big picture or forward thinker. Do this until they get you the MLS access. Do this until you can speak their language. Do this until you get your MLS access. But stay in touch with the other Realtors, because you never know when you will need them too.

Let this soak in a bit and see if it helps you to get the MLS access you need. Zillow or no other comp service is worth a darn, hey its hard enough to establish value with the MLS as it is. Some Realtors will say they can run the comps but a realtor see’s comps through a different light than the investor. Here is one major difference, WE write the $200,000 check to BUY the house, Realtors only list the house. We better be right-on with our comps! Get it!?! So they see running comps through a different pair of glasses, and this is one of many reasons why you need the actual MLS access yourself.

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Online Shop – Future of Shopping

Online shopping  witnessed spending of £178 million per week during January 2009. This means 3.7 percent of overall retail sales were through internet shopping. During 2008, online retail sales experienced steady and steep growth rate. It accounted for 3.1 percent in January 2008 and went up to 3.5 percent in December 2008. The trend is expected to continue as more and more people are showing interest in this arena of shopping.

Online shopping is extremely convenient and attract shoppers with lucrative offers. Almost every thing that is purchasable appears on the various online stores. It is impossible to summarize the entire list but few examples are books, gadgets, accessories, clothes, groceries, movies, music, shoes, heath and fitness products, cosmetics, eatables and travel tickets etc. Great variety of the products adds on to the excitement of buying online. Best holiday packages to the world’s greatest destinations are planned online within a short span of time. Even food joints accept delivery orders over the internet. Online shopping avoids the unnecessary wastage of time and money.

Initial cost to start a shop includes land prices, cost of the stock, construction rates and many more hidden costs. Additional to these costs are the running expenses of the store. On the other hand, selling products online requires no such setup and initial cost is very low. This allows attractive discounts on the deals and makes internet shopping economical for the buyers and profitable for the sellers. It is a win-win situation at both ends. The reduced cost is forwarded to the shoppers as discounts. This encourages the clientele to depend upon e-shopping for everything. The web stores offer discounts throughout the year and deals become very lucrative during peak seasons. The discounts vary from one shopping portal to another for the same product. Everyone tries to provide their products at cheapest possible rates to attract customers. Therefore shopping sites reduce their profits by offering heavy discounts to increase the volume. This calls for the concept of comparison shopping. There are many sites which offer comparison between the prices of same product on different sites. This allows user to view all deals at one location and make the best purchases. Companies and shopping portals distribute discount codes to attract internet shoppers toward their sites. The code number can be entered before leaving the shopping portal to avail discounts. Online shopping is becoming interactive and consumers share their views on various social shopping communities and blogging sites. They provide their personal experience with the products to help others make the right choice. The social shopping brings fun and excitement to the shopping experience.

Few other aspects about internet shopping requires careful attention. First is the Free Delivery advertised by sellers. It is not truly free as the delivery expenses are included in the product’s cost. Dealers accept shipment charges depending upon the distance. Therefore products delivered from close locations attract low shipment charges and other additional costs. Online dealers provide warranty for their products but the returns are difficult due to long distances. It requires the user to ship back the product and pay some additional charges in many cases. Maintaining privacy of the information supplied by buyers is another crucial issue. There are no law preventing this and sellers are free to get your information. This leak of information results in more direct-mail marketing, spam e-mails and telemarketer calls.

The online shopping is gaining continuous popularity and is becoming a growing trend among shoppers. The advantages of internet shopping are too attractive for people to resist. It is time to accept the new ways of shopping and enjoy its benefits.