Whether you intend to sell your home on your own, or utilize the services of a real estate agent, your home will be listed on the MLS, or the Multiple Listing Service. The MLS is an online catalog, of sorts, sorted by region and area, of homes that are for sale, as well as homes that have already been sold. The importance of the sold homes is that these homes provide the “comparables” for what price a home should have when it’s placed on the market.
The MLS has detailed descriptions of the homes, along with photos of the various rooms and exterior of the home. In the days of yore, the MLS was an actual book that was updated on a weekly basis. This transitioned into an online listing, but without photos. Nowadays, unlimited photos and even videos can be uploaded to the MLS, to assist buyers in their home search.
While the abundance of property listings on the Internet may seem like you can find your dream home on your own, an experienced real estate agent has access to even more listings that are available on sites such as Zillow and Trulia, thanks to the MLS. While these sites do have many listings, they can, and often do, fall behind in real-time listing status updates which is one of the best features of the MLS. Moreover, a professional listing search on the MLS will reveal homes with a “coming soon” status that only realtors are able to discover. Only those home buyers who are working with a realtor can act quickly when these homes do go live, so that’s something to consider if you’re deciding whether to use an agent or act on your own when buying a home.
Of course, most professional agents do subscribe to the MLS, but make sure the agent you choose does, in fact, do so. I hope to utilize my own experience and knowledge in real estate, and with the MLS, with an eye toward helping you in your own home search.
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