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Kevin, Home Buyer in Hollywood, Los Angeles...

I'm thinking of bidding on a house in a probate auction. Is there something tricky about it?

Asked by Kevin, Hollywood, Los Angeles, CA Wed Feb 11, 2009

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Monique & Joe Carrabba’s answer
Hey Kevin,

When bidding on a house at a probate auction the judge will request you have representation (an agent). People that don't have an agent may opt to use the listing agent but if you don't know them it's probably best to have an agent that you know there representing you.

Usually a probate auction is held because a property has an accepted offer and is in escrow. It's more of a hearing than an auction accept other potential buyer's can go and offer more than the current escrow price. You will need to bring a cashier's check for 10% of your bid amount. My experience is that judges will sometimes allow for you to go higher without having to provide more money but it depend on the judge you get. If you overbid on the property and the current buyer doesn't go over your bid than you are now the person in escrow on the house. The overbids are in 5% increments.

You should be able to do your inspections but make sure before your bidding that your agent requests all current inspections from the home and disclosures (such as if the person that passed away died in the home).

If you need representation, let me know as we have experience going to probate court and my husband is a Realtor and attorney.

Good luck!


Monique Carrabba
The Carrabba Group
Keller Williams Hollywood Hills
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 12, 2009
The only tricky thing about it is if you get emotionally attached to the property. On any auction, LEAVE EMOTIONS OUT! This is what really messes up most people. There is often a "teaser" price to lure in the crowds. It is extremely, extremely rare that it ever ends at the "starting bid". Also, depending how the market is at present and where the property is located may sway the action for the day.

I know there are cities where they CAN'T even give homes away! I also know cities where they are ending way over starting bid. Do your due diligence, get some coaching from an experienced investor, and / or agent. You might even consider going to a couple of other auctions before the "real deal" you are looking at to know what to expect. I wish you the best!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 11, 2009
Check and see what the minimum amount for over bids is. If I am not mistaken I think it is 5% (it's been a while). If you bid too low someone can come in and bid 5% above your bid and then you would have to bid 5% above that....so on and so on... You might want to check with the executor or a probate attorney.

Jeff and Cheryl Fox

Properties Plus
818-995-9108 Office
800-917-8080 Toll Free
818-207-2013 Cell
Email: mail@jeffandcherylfox.com
Webstie: http://www.jeffandcherylfox.com

16133 Ventura Blvd. 7th Floor
Encino, CA 91436
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 11, 2009
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