COMPS?!!

16 Replies

what is the best site to use for comps if not a licensed agent?

@Account Closed Try the websites for your local county government. Or your state may have a website. You will be looking for the property tax assessment site most likely, and it may have information about actual sales.

Also, I use a program/website called Courthouse Retrieval System (CRS). It's a paid service that comes along with my MLS dues, but I think that it can be bought without being a Realtor.

Really though, the best thing to do is to become a Realtor. That's my standard advice for all of my students.

@Account Closed I use CRS (www.crsdata.com) and I don't have a license. It's excellent information and is pretty widely underutilized (in my opinion).

It's $80 a month but it's well worth it in my opinion. 

@Bryan L.  

Do you find all of the data to be accurate from CRS? I'm assuming it's just all the info that would be on the MLS except for listings, would u say that's accurate? Do you have any complaints, tips or tricks?
One thing I've wondered is what it means when you see a recent sale (or last sale) and there's no price. Does this indicate something specific to you? 

I think that it's accurate with the data that it presents, but it may sometimes be incomplete. I think it's FAR better than Zillow (spit). Usually, when there is no price listed, it is often a Quit Claim Deed transfer.

Another advantage of being a Realtor - I get CRS included in with my MLS access (at less $ per month that what you are paying).

By the way, I think that CRS also has a prospecting module that will allow you to search for absentee owners and create a mailing list from the search.

@Bryan L.  

Thanks for the info, bud. I'm sure this is a silly question, and I promise I'm not being lazy, I've tried to determine this through my own research, but is MLS essentially a list of data that you can access through different sources? It appears that you can gain "MLS access" through several different sources, CRS being one of them. If so, is the "MLS" data identical anywhere you access it? You just pick a site, pay for it and access the same data as everyone else with a license no matter if they use CRSdata.com or MLS.com?

Also, I'm wondering if the single difference between CRS and MLS is simply that MLS has property listings, while CRS just has the property sales?

Last question, promise - My friend has a relationship with a Realtor that claims my friend as their "Assistant". He says he took a class and now has access to the MLS now, as he is his Realtor friend's "Assistant"...he doesn't have a license. Do you have any idea how I could obtain a relationship like that? Is that unethical or sketchy? If so, what can I do to provide value to a Realtor in exchange for getting them to provide me with comps for ARV or ideally an ARV that they calculated. Guess that was two questions : /

Sorry for all the questions, Bryan. Huge thanks for your time in reading! 

The MLS is owned, managed, and run by Realtors. We pay for it with our dues and expenses. Zillow, Trulia, et. al. are not "MLSes". There is only one true "MLS" and that is the one owned and operated by Realtors. Now, with that being said, there are actually many, many, many Realtor MLSes, since the MLS is typically local/regional in nature. For example, in your state of NC, there is the Charlotte MLS, the NWCarlolina MLS (including Asheville), and many others.

Many (if not most) local MLSes "syndicate" their listing data out to Zillow and others. The MLSes don't have to do that, buy many of them do (but some don't). So, the "for sale" info that you see on Zillow and others is sent there by the MLSes (except for the FSBO stuff). Usually, the MLSes only send part of the information. For example, the MLSes won't send out the info stating whether or not the property is vacant or occupied. Even with the MLSes sending the data to Zillow (and others), these "others" often do a poor job of keeping their websites updated with good, current, fresh data. As a result, some MLSes and brokerages are deciding to no longer send their info to these other sites.

CRS does not have "listings" of "for sale" properties. But, in my opinion, they do a much better job of getting data from the courthouses than Zillow and others do. I don't know why that is.

So, can you access the MLS through other sources? Not really. There are other websites that get a limited set of date from the MLS with the MLSes permission, but your are not really "accessing the MLS". Can you become a Realtor assistant and get access? Often, yes, but this will depend on the local rules for each local MLS.

The best way is to just become a Realtor.

You know, I hear so many people say that there are no deals on the MLS. And I know that it's not true, because I mostly buy MLS deals. But part of the reason that I can find deals on the MLS when others can't is because I have spent a lot of time (and money) really thoroughly learning the ins and outs of the MLS.

@Bryan L.  

Thanks for all the great info! I learned about half a dozen things from that reply. I appreciate you taking the time to answer. I checked out your website and I plan to give you a call sometime in the future. What sorta started to confuse me was that CRSdata.com has an MLS feature that you have to be licensed to access. Before seeing that I had no idea there was more than one place to access it, but now that I know Charlotte MLS, the NWCarlolina MLS etc are "local" MLSes, I wouldn't want to get info from anywhere else. If someone asked you, as a realtor, to pull cops and give them an ARV for a potential investment, and do this whenever they needed you to, would it be enough to just have an agreement that they would use your services exclusively? Is this something I could ask a realtor to do in exchange for money?

Thanks @Bryan L. !!

It's pretty easy to get comps with CRS (at least, it is with the version that I have). In the screen shot below, notice that I am on the "property report" page for the address of 78 Juanita St. But notice the "comparables" button that can be clicked. Clicking on this will take you to another screen with comparable sales to 78 Juanita. Now, you need to know what you are doing to really get the best comparables, but it's pretty easy. And yes, you can pay a Realtor to pull comps and calculate an ARV for you. Realtors can get paid by the hours, by the job, or by commission. Although most states mandate that you pay them through their brokerage. This is really no problem either.

@Bryan L.  

Thanks for the info. I use the comps tab on CRS as well. I appreciate you taking the time to put together the details.

Do you happen to know a good way to go about finding a Realtor that would be open to pulling comps and determining an ARV for me on a property here and there when I need them? Do you know how much I should expect to pay them to do this? Also, can you think of another way to "pay" them for their service instead of just giving them cash each time?

Thanks very much and have a happy holiday!  

@Bryan L.  

Thanks for the information Bryan, that was great! I leaned new things today.

You should try and establish a relationship with a realtor as well as a title company. I always use the same realtor to sell my flips. If I ever need info on comps I get them from my realtor. I have access to Corelogic the biggest and best data source for public record closings thru my title company's customer service rep. I send all my escrows to same title company.
Get the picture, relationships make a difference.

What state are you?

Originally posted by @Bryan L. :

It's pretty easy to get comps with CRS (at least, it is with the version that I have). In the screen shot below, notice that I am on the "property report" page for the address of 78 Juanita St. But notice the "comparables" button that can be clicked. Clicking on this will take you to another screen with comparable sales to 78 Juanita. Now, you need to know what you are doing to really get the best comparables, but it's pretty easy. And yes, you can pay a Realtor to pull comps and calculate an ARV for you. Realtors can get paid by the hours, by the job, or by commission. Although most states mandate that you pay them through their brokerage. This is really no problem either.

 @Bryan L Do you have a suggestion for a similar service in NJ? It looks like this isnt covered in my area but a very good tool to use for non-realtors. 

-Ryan

If you need comps in California, check out Fliper.com.  We don't limit the number of comps and you can search within 3 months to 12 months in a 1 mile and 2 mile radius.  We also allow you to print or email your reports for FREE.

Thanks,