Foreclosure in Westwood>Question Details

Francisco He…, Home Buyer in Los Angeles, CA

Are foreclosures only for professional investors?

Asked by Francisco Hernandez, Los Angeles, CA Fri May 16, 2008

I am an admit to the UCLA MBA (Los Angeles, CA) and I'm moving to LA next August. Instead of spending $30-40k during the next 2 years on a rented apartment, I was thinking of buying. Listed prices for apartments in forclosure and sold apartments seem really within my reach. However, I know little or nothing of this market, so my question is: are forclosures at reach for normal people, or do they end up only in the hands of professional investors?

Help the community by answering this question:


If you're interested in buying foreclosure property check the sherriff's website in your area of interest.

There you will find all of hte foreclosure listings free of charge. There is a TON of information on the net about what pitfalls to avoid when dealing with foreclosures.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri May 16, 2008
Francisco: Foreclosures (both preforeclosure and REO-owned by the bank) and short sales are well within the reach of "normal people". The trick is to work with a real estate professional who knows this market. I have been involved in this market for the past 5 years, exclusively. Contact me for more information.

Shel-lee Davis
Real Estate Consultant
RE/MAX Palos Verdes
2 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 16, 2008
Hi Francisco,
You can find a great deal on a foreclsoure in Los Angeles. This market is open to everyone, however you have to be patient and ready to act when the time comes. We work with many foreclsoure properties and can help you find the right property in Los Angeles areas.
We have a free list of foreclosures updated every Monday, sorted by zip code on our website at… .
You can also search the MLS on your own there too.
Feel free to find out more about us and what we do.
You can contact us with any questions you may have.
Good Luck to you
Lou and Alex
LA Real Estate Group
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Jun 14, 2008
We ended up buying a foreclosure, which was a fabulous deal. We had no hassles from the bank that owned the home. In this market, they seem willing to meet buyer demands on getting things fixed, despite their "as-is" claims. I would suggest finding a realtor who knows the market and deals with foreclosures. Good luck!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri May 16, 2008
Foreclosures are very much within your reach. You will need to check with a lender to see what loan amount you can be approved for so you know up front how much you can afford. You can reach me directly for more details 310-498-4942, Paul Cruz.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri May 16, 2008
K or Francisco , Did you find the sherriff's website for Los Angeles?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat May 31, 2008
As for the FHA loans - and "i don't recommending putting an offer on a fixer using an FHA loan because they're very strict".

In fact - there are FHA loan programs designed SPECIFICALLY for fixers. Look at the FHA 203(k) options.
Simply saying "FHA doesn't allow that" - is not nessicarily totally wrong - but it is not the entire story either.
In the right circumstances - the 203k loans can be a HUGE benefit to buyers.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 21, 2008
Foreclosures aren't ONLY for investors.
Investors have a much easier time with foreclosures because they have the liquidity to simply cut a check on the right property, at the right price. Banks like that - a lot.

If you notice - i said, on the right property, at the right price.
A lot of people assume that because a property has been foreclosed, you can just toss out some 80% discounted price, and the banks with thank the heavens for your low-ball bid.
This isn't the case.

There is a lot that goes into pricing foreclosures - and even more that goes into identifying which properties represent the best opportunities.

It is possible for the average person to get a great deal on bank owned property. However, do yourself a favor, and enlist the assistance of an expert in this field. Be prepared for a drawn out, sometimes frustrating, sometimes downright unplesant experience. You may get offers rejected several times for no reason. You may get an offer rejected, only to see the price drop below your offer. You very well may begin to question whether or not banks are truely qualified to deal with large sums of money. That's just part of the game.

Good luck! :)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 21, 2008
It depends on the condition of the property. If a property needs a lot of work, banks may not loan you the money to complete the property and a lot of investors are willing to pay cash for the property and flip it. If you are buying a property for yourself to live in, make sure you disclose the property to the bank before you make the offer. It will save you a lot of time. Your agent should help you out in finding this out. I have a lot of buyers right now, most of them are FHA borrower, and I don't recommend putting an offer on a fixer properties because FHA is very strict with their property qualification.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 21, 2008
All your answers are very helpful. Thank you very much.
By the way, I can't find the Sheriff's listings in LA County.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 16, 2008
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