IDX

Our site now includes GAMLS listings, in addition to FMLS

You probably know tGAMLShat an MLS (Multiple Listing Service) is a system that agents use to market their listings to other agents. Through something called IDX (Internet Data eXchange), agents can display all of the homes listed in the MLS on our websites, so you as a homebuyer can participate in your own home search. You may or may not be aware, but we have two MLS's in the metro Atlanta area, First Multiple Listing Service (FMLS) and Georgia Multiple Listing Service (GAMLS). Most Intown Atlanta agents use FMLS as our primary MLS. Everything in our geographical market niche is in the FMLS "mandatory" area, meaning agents who list properties in Intown Atlanta are supposed to enter their listings into FMLS. So, our website has always pulled listings from FMLS, since that should capture all of the homes and condos listed for sale in Intown Atlanta. But sometimes I see Intown Atlanta homes listed in GAMLS and not FMLS. In theory, that shouldn't happen, but in reality, sometimes it does. Often it's when agent from the south suburbs (where GAMLS is more prominent) comes into Atlanta and lists a property. It's also common with REO (bank-owned foreclosures), and either their agents don't know this is an FMLS mandatory area, or they're actually not members of FMLS.

Either way, we want IntownElite.com to be your go-to site for Intown Atlanta real estate, so we need to make sure our site has all of the listings. So, we added GAMLS to our IDX feed, meaning we have all listings from both local MLS systems, so you don't miss any listings. It's one of the things that makes IntownElite.com better than the ...

New Home Search features

We keep adding new and improved home search features here on IntownElite.com, and the latest additions are pretty slick! You may have noticed these already, but I hadn't blogged about them yet. One is the "autocomplete" location search box. This box can accept almost any type of location information, such as Cities, Zip Codes, Neighborhoods, Condo names, etc.  But now it can also accept addresses, MLS numbers and Schools. It works somewhat like Google's Instant Search,  just start typing and it starts figuring out what you're looking for. You'll see that autocomplete search box on our home page, in the right sidebar of pages that have one, and in the left sidebar of our home search.  

Below that search box is where you set your search preferences. The neat improvement here, is that as soon as you start entering in your criteria, the results to the right immediately starts displaying the listings that match those specifications. You can select price, bedrooms, baths, etc., and instantly the listings displayed on the right will automagically refine to display only those listings, and the green "Properties Found" keeps a running count of how many listings that meet those preferences.  Once you've set your preferences, you can mouse over property icons on the map, or see the listings displayed in a list or gallery format. Well, we think it's pretty cool, and we hope you will too. Bottom line, it empowers you to help you find a home that's perfect for you. Click here to try it out! Now, if you prefer not to do all the hunting yourself, we're here to help. Feel free to contact us and we can set up a custom search just for you.

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Square footage and Atlanta real estate

One of the most popular criteria home buyers have traditionally used when searching for a home is square footage. Until very recently, out-of-state or new-in-town home buyers looking for homes in Atlanta found themselves dismayed at the inability to search by square footage.

Yes, as absurd as it seems, it had been a long-standing policy of the local Multiple Listings Service (MLS) in Atlanta to prohibit the quoting of square footage in property listings. It was explained to me that this was to protect the agents from liability. Sure, there have been cases in the past where the buyer found out later that the square footage was not as quoted in the listing, and sued the agent. However, most markets throughout the country easily solved this with a simple disclaimer, something like "Information deemed reliable but not guaranteed." Also, most Purchase and Sale Agreements are written such that it's the buyer's responsibility to inspect, survey, appraise and measure the property during the Due Diligence period. (The measurement is usually done by the appraiser.) But even though the local MLS's implemented such disclaimers on general listing information, they still persisted with the ban of square footage information. Until now. Recently, the primary Multiple Listing Service used by Intown Atlanta real estate agents, FMLS, began to allow square footage information. For whatever reason, they did this initially on condos only, but now they have finally allowed it on single-family homes as well.

Still wary of a litigious society, they require that the source for the square footage information is included in the listing. Only three approved sources are allowed: tax records, appraisal, or the builder. Keep in mind, that tax records are not...

New year, new web site features

We always swell with pride when our new clients tell us that they "love" our web site.  We pride ourselves in having the most user-friendly website for Atlanta real estate.  To maintain that mantle, we're not resting on our laurels.  Don't worry, we're not changing our popular Intown Atlanta Neighborhood Guide and Buckhead Neighborhood Guide, both of which are client  favorites.  We have, however, added an Atlanta Zip Code Guide, as well as completely upgraded our property search and display functionality.

Finding the perfect Intown Atlanta home has never been so easy, and with such an intuitive interface.  While other real estate web sites overwhelm visitors with a sea of textboxes, checkboxes and city selection dropdowns, we instead choose to keep things simple yet powerful.

Now, if you're one of those "technology doesn't work for me" types, don't worry.  Feel free to call or email us and we can set up a custom search for you.  You'll be the first to see new properties as they come on the market and be notified of price changes as soon as they happen via email alerts.

So whether you want to search all on your own, have it all done for you, or anywhere in between, we can help you. Happy house-hunting!

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