Does Anyone Know How to Access MLS?

Updated on July 23, 2007
I.N. asks from Chicago, IL
20 answers

We are starting think about moving and are hoping to buy our new home without the use of a broker. Was wondering if anyone knew how to go about accessing listings on the MLS? Can this only be done through the use of a broker? Thanks for your input.

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A.Z.

answers from Chicago on

You can try www.gniarmls.com this is the same info that real estate agents get, except you dont get to see things like private comments from listing agents and days the house has been on market...you can also try realtor.com or go to any real estates website and do a search from there. You may also want to try buy owner sites. Good luck and feel free to email me any questions.

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L.L.

answers from Chicago on

We bought our new home and sold our old home without a real estate agent. We saved a lot of money. You can go to realtor.com or search online for other websites to look at homes. We listed our home on the MLS for only $350 and had to pay 1/2 a percent of our sale price, a law that was just put in place when we sold our home. The company that lists on the MLS negotiate for you so that's what the 1/2 percent is for. Let me know if you want more info. Our home sold within 24 hours! Good luck. It can be a stressful time.

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L.H.

answers from Chicago on

Go to www.realtor.com. Gives you everything you need. Just put in the area and other things you are interested in. It gives you all the house's that are on the market. Along with pictures and tours.

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S.S.

answers from Chicago on

Dreamtown.com is an awesome site. That's how we found our place. Good luck!

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K.

answers from Chicago on

I.,
Most real estate companies will allow you access to the MLS after signing up at their site. None require that you use one of their agents. The best site I found was www.ziprealty.com. They update their listings constantly so you don't have to worry about finding a property you like and then later finding out it is already under contract. Also, most listings reveal the listing agent or company so if you want to proceed without a realtor you can call the listing agent directly.

However, just to let you know, the realtors at ziprealty are incredibly helpful and most charge much less commission than other realtors I have dealt with. I am a little biased as I am using them to both sell my house and find me a new one, but I also did plenty of research and am quite happy with my choice.

Good luck in your search.
K.

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T.S.

answers from Chicago on

I.,

Realtor.com is a good site, BUT I can tell you from a lot of experience that it's not very current. It takes awhile for homes to be updated and if a home is already in a contract status with a contingent offer - there's no way to tell on the site. There could be a lot of phone calls to the listing agents to find this out and everytime you make a call on a house listed by an agent, you're going to be getting a little bit of a sales pitch from them to help you find a home. There's nothing wrong with that as that's their job. Lol, just be warned.

As for buying a home on the MLS with a Realtor, it doesn't cost you any money. The people selling the house have an agreement with a Realtor to pay a certain % of the sale (it varies, but let's use 5% for simplicity). That 5% includes the commission that would be paid to an incoming Realtor bringing in a buyer. So, if Realtor A has a house listed for $200,000 and you come and buy it without your own representative for that price, Realtor A's commission would be $10,000. At the same time, if you had Realtor B represent you, show you homes and you buy the $200,000 home with their assistance - Realtor A would have to give a portion of that $10,000 commission to your Realtor B. Again, it costs you nothing.

I'm not a Realtor, but I did take the classes and pass the exam last fall. I didn't go further with it as I got pregnant and didn't want to take on too much at that point. At the same time, I spend a portion of almost everyday looking on websites at houses for fun. I was just doing it when I switched over to Mamasource. I've bought and sold using a Realtor and without one. In all honesty, if I were going out buying a home today, I'd use a Realtor to represent me. If I were selling, I'd try and do that on my own - unless time was important and I needed to get our home sold ASAP.

Good luck and I could probably recommend a couple of people to help you out - depending on where you live. Feel free to email me if you would like.

T.

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K.T.

answers from Atlanta on

We like realestate.yahoo.com and realestate.com. Good luck!

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K.E.

answers from Chicago on

Hi! My name is K.. I am actually a real estate agent. I can't imagine why you wouldn't want to use an agent to help you find and purchase a home, but I guess I am a bit biased. There is no cost to you when you are purchasing a home. The commission comes off the sellers proceeds from the sale. Unless you are buying a home that's for sale buy owner, most people who have their homes listed on the mls, or any of these real estate company websites only want to be contacted by other agents. So if you do happen to find a home you like you will most likely need an agent to get you in to see the property. Ultimately, it is your decision, but we tend to make things a lot easier. I can set you up on an e-mail program (you tell me your criteria - location, # of bedrooms, price range etc.) and the mls will automatically send you all the listings that match your criteria. I'd be happy to that for you. If you choose not to go this route, you can go online to realtor websites such as Remax, Coldwell Banker, or my favorite LWReedy (that's where I work!)There is also just listed .com and the buyowner sites you can check out as well. Good luck! and if you would like to be set up on the e-mails, you can e-mail me at [email protected]____.com

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J.B.

answers from Chicago on

Here's a link for the Greater Northwest Indiana Association of Realtors property search page

http://gniarmls.rapmls.com/scripts/mgrqispi.dll?APPNAME=G...=

We use it all the time. And actually this last time we bought a house, I was checking this site (which realtors use) and would see new listings before our agent and call her with them. It how we jumped on this house.

good luck house hunting :)

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A.

answers from Chicago on
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T.W.

answers from Chicago on

HI I., I am always on-line looking at homes. I think the best two websites by far are:

www.ziprealty.com
and
www.homesbymarco.com

I would find a realtor that offers more conservative rates or money back. Or, shop around and go out looking with a couple of realtors. At the end of the day, they make soo much money for doing very little from a buyers perspective. When I bought my house in 2005 my realtor set up a search for me through the mls that is private. I had to pick the homes and he/she pretty much just took me to see them. I also feel his help negotiating wasn't worth the commission.

I know realtors won't like me saying this but, if you know where you want to move and you see a house that you like, I would knock on the sellers door and not even involve the realtor. Maybe you both can avoid paying the commission, that is an instant 5-6% savings! Everyone here says that the seller pays the commission and that is technically correct; however, when you sell you want a certain amount of money at the end of the sale. A seller will always adjust the asking price to take into account the commission to the realtor.

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A.A.

answers from Chicago on

I., when you buy a home you don't pay for the realtor, the sellers pay. We always have used an agent when buying because they can schedule the appointments and get you into most houses anytime of the day or week. Plus our realtor gave us access to their MLS page and I did nightly searches.
I would highly recommend using an agent because if you are new to buying, they are obviously more aware of certain things about houses as well. My only other recommendation is to find your own home inspector. Find one through a friend, not through the realtor, sometimes they get kick backs and may just go with anyone, not the best one in that field.
Good Luck!
A.

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S.

answers from Chicago on

go online to www.remax.com you can view virtual tours and actual pictures of the inside and outside of the house. It also has a mortgage calculator.
good luck

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M.M.

answers from Chicago on

As far I am aware of, only real estate agents/brokers have access to the MLS.

If you need an agent, the agent we used when we bought and sold our house offered us a really low percentage. If you need his name and number let me know. I passed on this information to my sister and she was able to sell her house very quickly... she was very satisfied with his service.

Good luck!

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K.K.

answers from Chicago on

We sold by owner, but paid a broker like 500 bucks to put us on MLS. You get to pick the percentage you give if the buyer has a realtor. We sold rather quickly and it was great exposure. To find our house, we really just read on-line stuff and drove around areas we liked.

Good luck

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J.J.

answers from Chicago on

You can look online at realtor.com. Anything listed on the MLS will also come up on this website.

Good luck!

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S.S.

answers from Chicago on

I'm quite sure I have done it before, but can't remember now (of course). Where are you looking? We have a few homes for sale right now (we aren't realtors/brokers) and would be happy to e-mail you pictures if you are interested....

S. Swanson

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C.G.

answers from Chicago on

Yes - this can only be done by a Licensed Real Estate agent. However, what I can (i am an agent) do for you is set up a "search" for you and have properties meeting your criteria emailed to you directly as they become available.

However, ultimately with these properties you WILL be required to use the services of a real estate agent because they are the ones who represent the Seller.

Hope this helps- C.

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K.F.

answers from Chicago on

Hi I.,

www.realtor.com is great!!

Best of Luck,
K. :~)

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