Foreclosure in Seattle>Question Details

Eric Wu, Home Buyer in Russian Hill, San Fr...

What is the best way to purchase a foreclosure in Seattle?

Asked by Eric Wu, Russian Hill, San Francisco, CA Mon Feb 6, 2012

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There are 2 basic ways, at an auction or through an agent when it's been listed. Depending on what you are trying to accomplish either may work for you.
As others have said, at an auction you'll need either full cash or a lender with a hard money loan and 20% down. There are services that assist buyer's at auctions, but you need your own expert to verify their opinions as to the real market value, especially if you intend to resell soon after buying.
If you are looking for a personal residence, forget about foreclosures pr short sales and focus on where you want to live and what you need in a house first. If you find a good home that was foreclosed or is a short sale be prepared for what that may mean.
If you are looking as an investor, are you intending to flip or purchase cash flow properties? This will affect how you value them and what and where you want to purchase.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 6, 2012
You got some good answers already & I think they have made the point to you already. I would suggest, that as a buyer, you Google every agent that responds to your question here on Trulia, learn as much as you can about who they are online, read their client testimonials, so you know what their clients are saying about them, and then give us each a call and just ask us why we think you should work with us instead of another agent. This will take you a little while to do, but will be time well spent, as choosing the right agent is the first step towards choosing the right home. Then, pick the best fit for you and let them go to work for you with the skill and knowledge that they have. I hope to hear from you soon.
Jirius Isaac
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 6, 2012
Ditto Larry Krismer's answer. If you have all cash, and you have done your due diligence on what properties in the area have actually sold for, then there is a small chance it might make sense to buy at auction. But usually the asking bid is too high; and/or if you have to use a hard money lender, the cost of hard money usually outweighs the benefits of purchasing at foreclosure auction. There is a secondary auction market, but this too carries some risks. Your best bet is to work with a great real estate agent who is familiar with the process of buying a bank owned home and can help you stay away from the pitfalls and purchase smartly. If you need a referral to a great agent in your area, let me know.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 6, 2012
Arron wrote: "In my opinion I have seen a few properties go for too much at foreclosure auction only to sell later for less money!"

I know of one situation where a foreclosure buyer (at trustee sale) paid about 25-30% for than a nearly identical adjacent REO.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 6, 2012
Use a good, trusted Real Estate Professional. Ask friends, relatives and co workers. Then look them up on the web. Anyone can write up the offer for you. You will want someone who will do more. So make sure your Real Estate Professional will stick with you through the whole process. Good Luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 6, 2012
Ditto what Geoff mentioned. Virtually every agent and company website will have foreclosure (bank-owned) listings. Unless, you're referring to trustee auction sales, though, agents should have access to that info as well. There are companies that specialize in assisting buyers with trustee auction sales, too.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 6, 2012
All he key. If your talking the post foreclosure REO route there can be strong strategies for that as well. In my opinion I have seen a few properties go for too much at foreclosure auction only to sell later for less money!
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 6, 2012
Eric -
If you are searching from San Fran, then the best option for you at this point will be to research online while partnering with an agent who is a certified REO agent, like myself. We work with buyers both local and out of the area and have a great website set up to help you identify the BEST DEALS in the area. I am also a HUD broker and can assist with HUD owned homes which are some of the best deals on the market today here in the Seattle area. I am providing a link for you to our website, but feel free to contact me at and I will gladly set up an account to notify you of NEW bank owned properties as they come on the market -- so you are the first to know of the newest inventory on the market. Additionally, I list bank owned homes for many asset management companies and often have access to lists of homes that are considered shadow inventory and currently not listed on the market. For example, I have the most recent list of Freddie Mac (pre-list) inventory and will gladly share that with you when I am working for you as your agent -- Let me know if I have caught your interest. Have a great day!!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 6, 2012
IMHO, buying at a foreclosure sale is too risky for most people. There are title and condition issues which could ruin the buyer financially.

Much better to wait until it's listed. You then get some limited inspection rights, a clear path to title insurance and have better financing options.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 6, 2012
We help people buy foreclosures both from a retail side and the investment side. There is some skill involved and I would say the biggest different between us and most others is we buy and sell ourselves and post our results on our website for all to see.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 6, 2012

The best way to purchase a foreclosure in Seattle wouold be to research the property you're interested in and show up at the foreclosure auction with certified funds in the form of a cashier's check (s), and then bid on the property.
Make sure you research the property. Repeat...research the property.

Good Luck
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 6, 2012
Contact a good buyer's agent, such as myself, locate a bank-owned property that you like, and prepare a written offer.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 6, 2012
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