Searching new house for purchase. Rental housing market. Magnifying glass near residential building. Created with Generative AI

You’ve got your credit in line, you’ve saved for a down payment, and you’re ready to narrow your hunt for that perfect house that you want to turn into a home. The tools available to aid you in your search are numerous, and many offer the initial information that will help you find exactly what you’re looking for in a home.

Location, location, location — that mantra you always hear — is really true.  So, if you have the parameters of location set, and you have solidified your three “must haves,” you should be ready to dig in. Google Maps has a useful tool to aid in narrowing a chosen location. It can show a specific home and how long it takes, at any given time and/or day, to transport to your work, school, shopping, theaters, etc.

Two online tools you can use are Zillow and RedFin, both free sites that list homes for sale in your chosen area along with details regarding bedrooms, bathrooms, square footage, and price. While information is useful on websites such as these, they are not local and cannot offer familiar knowledge. Additionally, pricing on these sites are often estimates, meaning that they are to be taken with a grain of salt.

Another tool to assist you in narrowing your search is  This website will aid you, if you have children, in learning about what the different schools in the region have to offer and what their strengths and weaknesses are. Of course, you are also welcome to visit any local school to get a personal feel for the educational culture.

While you can gather critical information from the internet in the beginning stages of your search, access to the Multiple Listings Service (MLS) is the ticket to the detailed information you truly need. Licensed realtors have uninhibited access to this site that will tell a buyer details not to be found on other websites. Via the MLS, your realtor can tell you details about how long property has been on the market, how much it sold for last time, define property lines and easements, covenants in place, previous owners, title information, tax levies, etc. So, while your hunt could use a combination of the tools mentioned, blending the information you acquired will open discussion points with a local licensed realtor with access to the MLS, and will result in a smoother transition from hunt to ownership in the right home.

Realtors at Windermere Group One live within this extended community and are familiar with the many areas that offer homes for sale. They can answer any questions you may have, like how much have the average utilities cost in specific homes, which cable/internet services are available, in what school district is a home located, is natural gas available to this area if you prefer cooking on a gas stove. The many questions you should have can be answered quickly and legitimately through your agent who aims to help guide you through what can be a complicated process. Their primary goal to help you into that one house that you can make your home.

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