Many "foreclosures" found on common websites also are not really foreclosures. The seller may end up doing a cash-for-keys. So you need to work with an experienced agent who can do some of the research for you, but it can be a lot of work. there are still short sales, and reos out there too. as first time buyers, it would be very worthwhile for you to work with an aget. courthouse sales can be very risky business.
I always suggest a buyer wait for the bank to foreclose on a house and then be placed on MLS , so that a buyer can do proper inspections and have an appraisal. You cannot do that on the courthouse steps
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