Using Technology in your Search for Real Estate

Real estate investing offers many advantages.  However, before you can invest in a piece of real estate, you have to be able to find a piece worth your investment dollars.  Local real estate agents have access to multiple list services, but sometimes these listings do not contain all of the information you may want to know.  For example, you may want to know prior owner history as well as possible appraised values.  Additionally, if a property is not listed by a real estate agent, it will not be in the multiple list service.  However, the property may be featured on another website.

Before you can investigate a property, you must first find a property that interests you.  As mentioned above, many properties are listed for sale on a local Realtor’s multiple list service.  However, the multiple list service will not have a record of every property for sale.  As such, check local websites or do a Internet search for “real estate for sale in [your city].”  A simple Internet search may reveal numerous properties that may interest you.

With respect to finding out information about prior owners and possibly information regarding taxes and house specifics, many counties provide access to public records over the Internet.  As such, you can search past deeds, tax information, and all other public information that is available on the property in which you have interest.  This valuable information may help you make a “better” offer on the property and thus, help you make a better investment.

In addition to public records, there are many Internet appraisal sites that will give you a rough appraisal of the property in which you are interested.  This will give you a gauge of the reasonableness of the seller’s asking price.  Immediately, you will know whether you are dealing with a reasonable seller.  Also, you will know whether there is a possibility for instant equity.

The Internet can also provide you with rental prices in the area of the property you are looking to buy.  This will be helpful because you will be able to determine whether you are able to cash flow on the property or if the property will be better served for other investment purposes.

Remember, the Internet is very helpful in finding properties for sale and in finding public information on those properties.  Additionally, you will be able to check on the value of the property and determine the reasonableness of the seller and whether there is a possibility for instant equity.  Finally, the Internet is a great way to discover rental rates for the neighborhood.