LuAnn
"Robin helped sell my mother-in-laws house after she passed away last June. I can easily recommend Robin. She was very responsive and timely with all of our questions and concerns."
Former FSBO

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Step 4: It's time to go shopping!

Shopping for homes

There are lots of ways to find homes for sale.

  • Buyer’s agent – The fastest, easiest, most effective and efficient way to shop for a home is through a good buyer’s agent, like Robin Guernsey. A buyer’s agent has the time an resources to search the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), the FSBO listings, and advertisements for you, based on your wish list. Because this is his/her fulltime job, your agent is more likely than you are to spot new listings and current listings whose prices or terms have changed. About buyer’s agents.

 

  • Drive around – If you have the time and want to get a feel for a neighborhood, talk a walk or drive around and look for yard signs. Jot down the contact information of the home you’re interested in, pick up a flyer if one has been provided, and go home and do your homework. Don’t just knock on the seller’s door and ask to take a look. Make an appointment with the seller for a walk-through, once you’ve had the opportunity to do some research.

 

If you’re using a buyer’s agent, pass along the information along the info you picked up, and let him/her look into the property for you and set up a walk-through appointment with the seller. If you’re shopping on your own, review the flyer, check out any web links provided, and call the phone number on the sign. Have your wish list and a pencil and paper handy – often the telephone numbers on signs are voicemail messages that provide detailed information about the home.

 

  • Web search

– MLS – The Multiple Listing Service is a searchable database of homes on sale listed by realtors and update daily. WisconsinHomes.com offers a glimpse of that database here. But only professional realtors, who have paid the MLS subscription fee, have access to complete, up-to-the-minute information.

– FSBO – There are numerous For Sale By Owner web sites to search through. Just type “fsbo Madison” into Google.

– Surf – If you type “homes for sale Madison” into the search bar, you’ll have pages and pages of individual homes and lists of homes to look through.

  • Newspaper ads – Some real estate agents and homeowners post listings in the classifieds about homes for sale.

5 tips to get the best deal

Step #5: Making an Offer