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How To Find Your Dream Home

Don't just rely on your realtor - here are several other resources you can use to find homes for sale in your area

Many people rely on their realtors to help them search for a home. While this is a good place to start, it is not the only way to find your new home. In fact, you can - and should - look for houses for sale in as many places as possible, because you NEVER KNOW where you'll find your perfect home! (and make sure to create your "dream home wish list" so you know exactly what you are looking for - for ideas read our homebuying checklist).

We learned this lesson the hard way.

How Did We Find Our Home?

Despite being on an automated email home listing service from our real estate agent (and if you have not already found an agent to help you, you should definitely hire a real estate agent as soon as possible), we ultimately found our home on our own. Not that we had the time to do it all on our own. But, we quickly learned that no single house listing resource is complete. By doing our own research, and using the following resources to find our "dream home"! Not everyone selling a home uses a realtor - with the high cost of commissions, people selling their own homes ("for sale by owner") is becoming more popular. And you won't find these houses on the house listing service from your realtor.

How to get the lowest rate on a mortgage...

There are so many decisions when getting ready to buy a house. One of the most important is your mortgage. Some home buyers just call their local bank and get their mortgage there. But your best option is to shop around & compare. Lending Tree will give you up to 5 different quotes so you can compare interest rates and fees and get the best possible deal. It's a free service and will only take a a few minutes to complete an online quote form, and then you'll know that you'll be getting the best mortgage. You might to able to save yourself a few hundred dollars a month just by shopping around before you start house hunting.



Where Else Can You Find Houses For Sale?

You should certainly ask your realtor to put you on their automated house listing service. But there are several more resources with house listings you can use to find your "dream home":

  • Your local newspaper – check the classifieds under real estate. While the Internet has changed the role of newspapers, there are still those people who feel more comfortable selling in print, so you might just find a “nugget” in your local paper.

  • Real estate guides found in restaurants and supermarkets – years ago this was a great way to find a new home. These days, you can find more up to date listings online, but this can still be a good resource.

  • "For Sale" signs located throughout town (get in your car & start driving around, it's fun!) – not only is this fun, but sometimes you might find a house with a for sale sign before it gets listed. The biggest benefit is that you get to see the neighborhoods where the houses are located. When you see a listing, all you see is the house. By driving around you get to see the entire area.

  • The Internet – obviously this is the best way to find homes for sale. Some of the best websites are listed below, but you can also check out websites such as Craigslist or your local newspaper, too.

Here Are Some Popular Websites

Here are some of the more popular Internet house listing websites. The more places you look, the more options you will have for choosing your new home. So check out all of them. Now, here are the best "houses for sale" websites:

Realtor.com

I Sold My House.com

ForSaleByOwner.com

Yahoo Real Estate

Or do a search for "houses for sale" or "home listings" or "real estate listings" on your favorite seach site. Don't limit your home search to just one source. You never know how - or where - you'll find your perfect home! These days there are lots of resources for finding a house, and you might not know where the right one is listed until you look in as many places as possible!

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