Re: How Do I Find Comps? - Posted by Mark LaNore
Posted by Mark LaNore on February 15, 2001 at 11:31:28:
There are a couple of ways; you can get comps for your subject homes. One is to develop a relationship with a Title Insurance company in your area. You should do this anyway, since you will probably be using their services when you actually close on a property and will be needing title checks and title insurance and escrow services performed when you make your purchase(s). Ask if they have an ability for you to get the comps yourself online for little or no charge. Explain that you don’t always want to bug them. Usually a title insurance customer service rep can get you the comps and the company will do it for free. You can usually get additional information including a copy of the last deed, plat map(s), demographics (schools, neighbors, businesses, ect.).
Another way is to get a free account on http://www.titleadvantage.com. This site is sponsored by a group of southern California title insurance companies. This service is free as well. The data is gathered from a service called Dataquick, which covers most of the country. You could also subscribe to Dataquick or another service called Metroscan, but they can be quite expensive relative to your budget for such activity.
I’m just a beginning investor, but I look for the most inexpensive ways to get information to make an intelligent, informed decision about a property. When you get your comps, you’ll want to compare properties that are similar in size (square footage) age, sales date, and construction and in similar neighborhoods. Size differences can vary as much as 10-20%. So what I do is find comps that are +/- 20% of the square footage, with same amount of bedrooms, and baths, within that last six months, and within no more than 2-3 miles of the subject property.
If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to write me direct (if you like). I’m not in the business to sell anything, but I do know that some people like a little more private conversation via email than posting on a public board such as this.
First Pacific Group