Whenever you are able to search for homes, land or properties on a realtor website, it is done through an IDX (Internet Data Exchange). They all use the MLS listing as the source data. However, they are not all presented or displayed in the same format. Each has its pros and cons. After reviewing many IDX systems, the search tool below is the best one I’ve seen. The reasons and basic search procedures are listed below. Whether you’re looking for a waterfront home in Chandler or Gilbert, or a starter home in Mesa, this IDX property search will save you time and frustration.
One of the main reasons why this search tool is so useful is it will filter out the short sale listings that are under contract. I frequently get calls from buyers that will ask if a specific property is available. Unfortunately, the response is frequently “no”. Then I hear, “Well on Realtor.com (or some other site) it shows as available!” It is common practice to change a listing from Active to AWC (Active with Contingency) or Pending when a short sale offer is accepted. Many websites do not differentiate between Active and AWC, so the property still appears as Active when it’s not. Using the above search for active status listings will reflect properties that are indeed available.
The search has already been set for waterfront lots in Maricopa and Pinal counties. If you decide later on that you also want to expand your search to non-waterfront properties, just click on the box or”Property Description” and it will open up a menu of other types of properties, such as golf course lots, lots that border a common area, etc. and you can modify your search.
One of my favorite parts – Get rid of the AWC listings!
This part will save you countless hours of frustration. Below the preset waterfront lot and Maricopa/Pinal county criteria there are various other criteria that can be used to refine your search. Two of most important criteria are towards the bottom. The third criteria from the bottom is “Status”. This has been preset to Active which eliminates the AWC and Pending listings. It is important this remains set as Active, unless you like to see other listings that are under contract. If you’d like to eliminate shorts sale or only see lender owned foreclosure, go the “Special Listing Cond” line. By clicking on the words, it will expand and you have even more control over the search of specific types of properties, such as short sales, lender owned, age restriced (retirement), pre-foreclosure, and previously approved short sales. If you want to eliminate any specific type of sale, click on the “or” after the box and it will change to “not” thus filtering out that type of property listing. One quick question; can you do all of this with Zillow, Trulia, or Realtor.com?
Now that you’ve become acquainted with some of the more powerfull features of this IDX search in a somewhat confined space, here’s the opportunity to see it in full screen. Click on Advanced Waterfront Search to take advantage of the full width of your screen with this search tool.
Wait – There are more search tools to help you.
Once you pull up the full screen waterfront search , you’ll have a wider view of the map portion of the search tool. At the bottom of the screen you’ll see a tool bar like the one to the right. A handy tool is the one in the middle that looks like a turtle?, but if you put your mouse over it it says “measure”. It’s great for measuring distances. Simply right click on the icon then place the crosshair over the beginning point and left click. Then move the crosshair to the point you want to measure and left click again and it will show the distance between the two points. You can continue adding and measuring segments and it will give you a cumulative distance in addition to the distance of each segment.
Another useful search tool on the bar are the three to the far right. They are useful in defining the search area. Let’s say you know the area you want but it includes parts of two cities but not the entire city boundary. Or you want to search within a certain radius of your work. The far right tool allows you to draw the area by left clicking the boundaries of the geographic search area. To utilize the map tools you must be in the full screen display of the search.
As you can see, this IDX search tool allows you to create the most refined and detailed search possible so that you can better identify potential properties. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to call me at 480-326-8571. As always if you’d like me to do the search , click on Send me waterfront property.