MLS Offer Week: Pulling Comps

Scott CostelloAll, Blog 8 Comments

Today I went through all 13 properties I pulled yesterday that met my criteria and pulled up the comps for each on the MLS.

Search For Comps:

To search for my comps I’m searching by town, exact Beds and Baths (I expand my search if I don’t get a good return) and I’m looking 6 months back.   I’m also looking at the Under Contract and Solds over that period of time.

Search Results

Since I am searching by entire town I’ll get many more properties then I need and a good amount of them will be to far away to use.

Narrowing Down By Location

Now what I do is select all the comps and view them on a map like so

I then locate the Property I’m interested in and then zoom into that area

The is where the “offer property” is located and the other Red Circles are the comps.

Final Step

I’ve gotten all the comps now by location, now I just have to take a closer look at each listing and pull out the 3 or 4 most similar houses to the “Offer Property” and then come up with an ARV.


I’m far from an expert at pulling comps so If anyone has any suggestions or criticisms feel free to leave a comment.  Till tomorrow when I come up with the ARV’s and MAO (max allowable offer) for each of the 13 Properties.

Scott Costello
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Comments 8

  1. I'm sure every area is different. I simply look at everything sold within a few blocks of my target for 3-6 months back. Then I go 6-12 months back. I want to get a trend. I look at comps every single day. Then once a week a select my target zip codes and see what sold that week, how long they were on the market etc etc. The pictures also give me ideas for rehab, an idea if it is a rehab, etc etc.

    I'm not sure what others do, but repetition has allowed me to have a ballpark ARV just by hearing the sq ft and neighborhood. Since we have micro neighborhoods, I then narrow in my search. The best comps are as close to your property as possible with the same features. Captain obvious I know, but I have to remind myself that sometimes.

    This is a great practice even with probates. Another idea if your worried about your numbers is to bounce a few off a friend in the field. Every time I get close on a property, I bounce the numbers off my buyers agent.

  2. That is a habit I need to get myself into. Any tips on making it easier and quicker to look at the comps everyday?

  3. I like these ideas Scott and Bilgefisher and I am glad I am on the right track from everything I learned throughout studying REI. I don't have MLS access so I resort to suggested sites like, Trulia or then I Google Maps for a closer look at the properties. Pls tell me if you see something I should or shouldn't do this way, Scott when you go over ARV and MAO can you help me with info about developing a relationship with agent to gain MLS access I can't seem to call anybody right now I hate this FEAR. Thanks all

  4. Sure. Have the MLS send you an email of what sold yesterday (everyday) in your targeted zips. Shouldn't be more then 5-10 props. Look at them and see key facts. Foreclosure, ss, rehab, owner sale, dom, price etc etc. Within 2 months you'll know everything happening in your areas. heck you'll even have an idea of the current cash buyers with this method. They will be flush with cash since they just sold.

    Another idea.
    Locally we have a company that produces a map of average values for a neighborhood. You may not be able to get that, so produce a google map or wall map that has different color push pins for price of homes. 50-100 red 100-25 blue etc etc. Then see where the trends are.

    If you don't want to use a visual method, use your spreadsheet. Break down zip codes to neighborhoods and sub neighborhoods. Write down key features for each prop. Day sold, dom, sq ft, lot size, rehab, foreclosure or owner sale…etc etc. 2-3 props a day and your list will have 90 comps by the end of the months. Before long you will be able to hear a street address and size and know ~ARV before even looking at the home.

    I learned quickly that trying to bite off all the mls at once is a very bad idea. It is simply overwhelming. A couple properties each day is much more manageable. All these items should take less than 15 minutes each day. Just make sure you do it every day so you don't get backed up and overwhelmed again.

  5. Pingback: Pulling Comps On The MLS: How To Do It | Real Estate Investing News Watch Blog Aggregator

  6. I'm not sure if you are like me or not, but I find that talking with someone in person is easier then talking over the phone. If that is the case for you, go to REI meetings and start talking with Realtors there. Get them working with you first by sending you listings and possibly showing you houses and submitting offers. Then after you've gone through that a few times and are able to talk with your agent about other things outside of real estate (building a trusting relationship) then throw the idea out there of dropping by their office to use the MLS yourself for research. If they accept, then after doing that for a few months ask if you can just log in from home to save time.

    Worth a shot

  7. Inside Secret!! On any given day, roughly 40-50 thousand properties never get listed on the MLS! They stay on the books of the Broker and go first to Investor clients. REO's, although must be listed, they still are offered to Cash buyers first. (2 week window). Although, your analysis and methods are very good, the hidden gems in most neighborhoods go without notice.

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