Foreclosure in Pittsburgh>Question Details

rockthecasba…, Home Buyer in Greensburg, PA

I am looking for exhaustive information about the Allegheny County Sheriff Sale.

Asked by rockthecasbah121, Greensburg, PA Tue Jan 15, 2013

Here is the link to the February's sale:

I have been looking at the Allegheny County Sheriff's sale for awhile, but would love to hear from somebody who is familiar with it or has bid on properties there before. As an example, I'd like to use this sale:
124. George John Haritos, with Notice to Heirs and Assigns, owners, and reputed owners
Joseph W. Gramc, Esq.
In the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, County of Allegheny, Borough of Edgewood: Having erected thereon a two story brick multi-family house being known as 1108 East End Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15218. Deed Book Volume 11563, page 450. Block & Lot No. 177-B-89.

Going to the assessment website, you can see that George Haritos bought the house in 2003 for $1 and that back taxes are owed to the county. Then using this website: , it appears that there is an open mortgage from PNC Bank

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Andy Theobald’s answer
Buying at a sheriff sale is heavily laden with risk. I wouldn't advise anyone, even experienced real estate investors, to purchase a property there. But if you are serious about it, start by attending a sale in person just to observe. You'll more than likely discover that many sales that are scheduled don't actually go to sale and that almost all of the properties that do sell go to the lender that brought the foreclosure. Why? It's simple. They've already put out money on the loan to the owner and all the costs of bringing the foreclosure. They've already put all that money in and won't walk away until another bidder puts in another dollar more. Meanwhile, if you buy at that point and something is wrong with the foreclosure, you're stuck with it.

It's much better to wait until the property is on the market, you have an opportunity to thoroughly inspect it, purchase title insurance and have at least a possibility of recourse against the seller if something has gone wrong.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jan 16, 2013
Not all properties at a sheriff sale have mortgages attached to them. 38.6% of homeowners in Pittsburgh are mortgage free. I am interested in the process of the sheriff sale for houses that do not have mortgages or have low outstanding balances on a mortgage.
Flag Wed Jan 16, 2013
Be careful buying at a sheriff's sale. You should do a title search before bidding because there can be junior liens, unpaid property taxes, and unpaid lienable municipal bills, etc. owing against the property that might not be cleared by the sale. Better to bid at judicial sales instead, such as US Marshal sales.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 15, 2013

What outstanding liens could there be that are not captured by Allegheny County's online record? From what I've seen, usually includes all tax liens, and mortgage foreclosures, utility liens, and contractor liens.
Flag Tue Jan 15, 2013
opened in 2006 for $160,000. Then, using this website, , you go to civil/family division then user logon then to search or to pay for filings. You can get on using the username "Public" and the password "public". You are then able to check out every lien against a person when searching by name.

My question is how close is this process to complete? Let's say I had done all of this for a listing and there was no outstanding mortgage and there were recorded tax and utility liens but no IRS liens. If I went and bid on the property for the amount of the outstanding liens, would I be in for any surprises?

Also, I had heard that a lot of times the amount listed on the sheriff sale is not the amount the bidding starts at. For the example I used, would the bidding start at the $5,872 + whatever was left on the mortgage + any other outstanding liens?

I know in this example, the bank will probably come purchase this property, but what if there was no mortgage, just other liens, but no one bid?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 15, 2013
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