If you are reporting in May/June, I would like to start looking for and compiling listings in anticipation of your arrival…either now, or definately after the holidays. Should I use the house in Graham as an example of what you are looking for?
It may sound early to you, but what I like to do is start looking for listings and saving them in an online “portal”. This does two things…the listings in the portal are updated in real time, so if there is a price change or sale, we will know. The second thing is that it forces you to be immersed in the market, giving you a really good feel for what is out there, what prices are like (and you will in time learn to recognize good deal -V-over priced).
I also want to mention financing…if you have not already, I recommend talking to a lender now. Doing so early will give you time to fix things if there are issues. I have worked with a local (very well respected) lender since I PCS’d to Lewis. Her name is Jan Ward, she is a lender/not a broker, and she gets people closed in about 3 weeks. The big lenders are running 45-60 days (such as USAA). Jan qualifies people by email all the time, and her email is firstname.lastname@example.org. Of course you can use any lender you want, but a local, well known lender can help in getting your offer selected over another with a less well known or slower lender.
Hope this helps…