Saturday, April 12, 2008

MLS! - What Does Soccer Have to Do with Buying a Home?

While doing some spring cleaning in my office for an upcoming event (that will prompt me to post a press release in the future…….stay tuned), I received an unexpected “walk-in” buyer.

“Mr. Patterson…I drove here from Boston and saw your ad in one of the local real estate magazines. To be closer to my family in Eastover, I am here to buy a home and 40 acres of land. Can you help?”

You all know my answer to that question!

I lead the New Englander to my conference room and began the Buyer Interview.
After some initial chit-chat, I asked……..What is your goal in this real estate transaction?

“I’d like to buy a big home with little money!”

“Well…’Mr. New Englander’, let’s scan the MLS database for homes that meet your criteria.”

“Mr. Patterson…..MLS! What Does Soccer Have to Do with Buying a Home?

“Mr. New Englander”……..I don’t understand.

“We have a soccer team in New England called The Revolution. They play in the MLS!”

No. No. No………MLS stands for the Multiple Listing Service.

Multiple Listing Service (MLS) is a database which allows real estate brokers representing sellers to share information about properties with other real estate brokers who may represent potential buyers.

By conducting an initial buyer interview with MLS at my fingertips, I bring more efficiency in the home searches of first time home buyers or those relocating to Columbia and Irmo, SC.

When meeting with a Buyer Agent for the first time, you should already have answers to these Top 10 Basic Questions that will be asked during a search of the MLS database………..

1. Have you been pre-approved for a mortgage? What is your desired monthly payment?

2. What area of metropolitan Columbia, SC interests you? (Northeast Columbia, Irmo, West Columbia, Lexington, Blythewood, etc.)

3. Are school districts important to you? Do you have a preferred school district?

4. Are you against being in a neighborhood with restrictive covenants?
5. Do you have a preference between an older home and a newer home?

6. How many bedrooms and bathrooms?
7. Do you prefer a ranch-style or two-story home?
8. Do you require a fireplace, garage or hardwood floors?
9. Do you have a preference between brick or vinyl exterior?
10. Do you have a preference between homes on crawl spaces or slab foundations?

By answering these questions before accessing MLS, you could save yourself $3.20+/gallon in gasoline costs and possibly put yourself on the fast track to finding your next home.

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