How Real Estate Investors Find Deals Using Multiple Listing

By: Chris Parks

There is constant debate about Real Estate Investing and the best ways to find the types of properties that investors are looking for. One discussion that is ongoing is whether or not Real Estate Investors can find profitable deals using the Multiple Listing Service (MLS). I say that there will always be deals to be had even on the MLS; and there is one simple secret to getting them under contract!

Some Real Estate Investors say that the good deals are gone before they even make it to the public MLS because the Real Estate Agents pocket the listings by holding off putting the listing in the system. Other Real Estate Investors simply do not bother looking because they believe that the MLS is a complete waste of time. On the other hand there is a percentage of Real Estate Investors who continue to look for and find good deals on the MLS. So, what separates the two?

So, while it may be true that MLS deals go very quickly, it is also true that the MLS is a often a great way to find deals because you already found an owner who wants to sell. As investors what we need to do is find the owners who "need" to sell (no matter what) as opposed to want to sell.

So, what's the big secret?

Real Estate Investors Who Make Offers...Get Deals! Profound, I know.

In my experience it is rare that an owner will "advertise" either on the MLS or anywhere else for that matter that they are willing to sell their property at 60% or less. So as investors looking for deals on the MLS we need to look for certain motivational factors. One factor is that the listed price will often be less than other properties on the market in that same area. The second, and perhaps the biggest factor, is that the keywords in the listing comment section will often show some type of seller motivation.

As Real Estate Investor looking for deals on the MLS I am looking for keywords such as: bank owned, third-party approval required, vacant, fixer-upper, MUST SELL, relocating, estate sale, needs work, military family, tenant occupied, will consider all offers, etc.

Another factor I look for is how many days a property has been on the market. A seller may not start out motivated but often times the longer a property has been on the market, the more motivated a seller will become.

I admit that this is a strategy that takes a lot of offers! And, you also need to scan the MLS regularly. I also admit that this is not the only way every Real Estate Investor should tackle the MLS strategy, however I do know that it works.

When it comes to investing in real estate many people seem to over-complicate things. Do not make this more difficult than it has to be, the bottom line is really quite simple, Real Estate Investors Who Make Offers...Get Deals! Want success? Make offers!

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