Best Resources For Watching Real Estate Market Trends

5 Replies

Hello! I'm a new member to BiggerPockets and pretty new to real estate as well. I graduated college a few years ago and I am a CPA by trade, but I plan on pursuing some real estate investing (probably via buy-and-hold/rental property at least to start) in the near future. Just for reference, I'm in Lakeland, Florida (between Tampa and Orlando).

(I apologize in advance if there is already a forum on this, but I didn't see this topic when I did a quick search.)

I was wondering if anyone could give me some insight as to the resources they use to track real estate trends (national or local). I have a financial planning/investments background so I'm familiar with economic reports released by the Commerce Department with data on GDP,  inflation, existing home sales, new home sales, housing starts, etc. And it looks like puts out a National Real Estate Market Outlook (as I assume others do annually as well). But I'm wondering what other resources are out there that others are using and at what frequency. 

As it relates to local, of course I understand that each market can vary drastically and that the only way I will be able to get an understanding of my market is to dive in and be in the market. But I'm still curious as to whether anyone has a source they use for local (state, county, city) data (aside from local REIA meetings which I am attending).

I have about 5 real estate books I'm going through right now trying to learn as much as I can about investing and other specifics but I'd like to try to gain familiarity with the market as a whole as well. 



Great afternoon Leighann,

I watch/analyze my local market through the MLS and I use the redfin app on my phone. I am a licensed agent which gives me access to the MLS. I have searches saved which send me emails as houses are listed, sold, and put under contract in that target market. I also add these houses to my favorites list on redfin. The MLS offers tons of data but I specifically like the fact I can pull up a map of my target market and outline the area on the map that I want to track. I like redfin because the app shows all of the sales for the house within the past few years as well as when offers are placed on a property and when those offers fail to go through. Essentially the redfin app is for when I am on the go. And the MLS is for when I can sit in front of the computer. Finally when something sells, I keep that house 'favorited' and I get an alert when the rehab is complete and flipper puts house back on market. So I have tracked the property's progress from initial listing - initial sale - after repair listing - after repair sale. I am tracking price, condition of purchase and rehab, days on market, real estate agents used in the sale on both ends. For rental markets I am looking to track purchase price, days on market, condition.

Hope this helps!


The lakeland realtor association produces market statistics on their website.. it’s mls wide not just POLK co or lakeland.  Let me know if you need any help, we flip about 70 homes a year and are now doing a lot of new builds, in addition to rental portfolio..


It sounds like you’re on the right track. I’m primarily a long term investor with Buy & hold and some rent to own. Of course I consider the market trends, but more importantly as a Long term investor I look at the deal. If I buy right it doesn’t matter if the value drops in half because cash flow is the goal. Best of luck! If I can be of any help reach out.

Thank you so much for this info @Eric H. ! I don't have access to MLS yet but I downloaded redfin!

@Gavin Welch thank you! Hopefully I'll run into you around town one day. I'd love to chat more. 

@Adrian Smude thanks! That definitely makes sense. I keep hearing over and over again that it's what you buy it at that really determines whether it's a deal or not. 

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