There are two reasons we might use a search engine to search for a house today. 1) We are trying to buy a house. 2) We are trying to sell a house. Outside of pure entertainment, those are the only two reasons.
Are we siting on the couch with our laptop, looking for the next chapter of our lives, or are we trying to see how our house looks on the Multiple Listing Service? Three times, this week, I have been reminded that we, as human beings are not always born knowing how to use a property search engine.
Keep in you mind whichever of these is easier for you to keep in your mind. Brevity is the soul of wit (or I should say “hit.”) -OR- Less is more.
What is the address?
Let’s say we are looking for a house on 123 Guttersnipe Trace in Sub Arctic Estates. The first inclination might be to put 123 Guttersnipe Trace, in the neighborhood of Sub Arctic Estates, hoping to find it.
The problem is the agent who entered the listing may have entered 124 Guttersnipe Trace, or 123 Gutter Snipe Trace, or 123 Guttersnipe Tc or 123 Guttersnipe Trce, and on and on. The agent may have entered Sub Arctic Estates or Subarctic Estates or Subarctic Hills. The combinations are many. Sometimes part of the information is auto-populated by the tax records according to their own logic.
If a person is looking for a house to purchase, they are possibly missing a good number of the homes out there. If they’re looking for Open Houses for this Sunday, their agenda will be sadly incomplete.
Worse yet, when they are selling their house, and they can’t find it, they are sure it is not on the MLS. They are certain the agent they are using is so worthless, that the house isn’t even showing up on the MLS. Time for an angry phone call!
In practice, when you are looking for ANY house on the MLS, the fewer details you put in as requirements, the more returned possibilities you will have to view. You must be exact with your desired county. You must be exact with whether you need “residential” or “condominium.” But be “fuzzy’ with the rest of your requirements.
Just put the street name in your search, and not “Trace” or “TC” or “TRCE.” In fact, just put the first couple of syllables of the name. Put “Gutter” or even “Gut” and don’t put the neighborhood name at all.
If you have a reason to look for the neighborhood, then do the same. just enter “Sub.” Don’t even put the street name at all. With any of these you may get back a list of two or three. Just pick the correct one at that point.
Just always remember, the less you specify, the more returns you’ll get, but the house you need will more likely be there. I know, no one has ever told you this before, but now you know. Go searching!
Yes, I am the Reasonable Realtor, Don Martin, MARTIN PROPERTIES (615) 973-8970. Just make your comments here, or you can reach the Dean of Graduated Realtors at www.FSBO-GUY.com or “like” him at http://www.facebook.com/MartinProps