Apr 04, 2008

Hop on the Foreclosure Bus

By now, many of us have heard of the latest trend in foreclosure sales: shepherding a group of interested buyers onto a bus, then driving them around to look at foreclosed homes (and maybe stopping for lunch along the way). Definitely efficient for the agent involved, probably interesting for the potential buyers.

In many states, there's lots to choose from. But buyers who think every distressed property is a good deal should think again. There's usually very little room to negotiate with the lender, and waiting for a reply can take awhile. I have a friend who put in an offer on a short sale three weeks ago, and is still waiting for lender approval.

Another potential problem is that you may have to take the property "as is." That means you won't have the benefit of a professional property inspector to look the place over (though apparently, some foreclosure tours bring one along). If you find problems later, they're yours to fix, even if they were the prior owner's fault.

Finally, there's the simple problem of moving into a house that may be in disrepair. Beyond worrying about whether everything works properly, you may have to do some serious work to make the place habitable. Some houses are even missing their fixtures or kitchen cabinetry (and there's a trend in stealing copper wiring -- sadly, sometimes worth more than the house itself).

Even if all these factors don't deter you, do your own research first. In a market full of opportunity, you'll probably be able to find a home without these problems at a fair price. And you shouldn't have a problem finding a real estate agent eager to take you on a personalized tour, either.

Alayna Schroeder

2 Comments

I don't know about the foreclosure hop-on-bus practice, however personalized tour is turning into nearly everyday routine. But what makes a good realtor is an offer more suitable to a client. It's not about number of available houses or condos but about qualities of every matching one. I myself have a long experience in the domain, personally specialized in offering Toronto condos and I can only recommend to any interested bueyer to check on houses in foreclosure auctions, you may buy a nice property under its market value

Yes, many of us have heard of the foreclosure sales: shepherding a group of interested buyers onto a bus, then driving them around to look at foreclosed homes (and maybe stopping for lunch along the way). Definitely efficient for the agent involved, probably interesting for the potential the Home Buyers.