Question Details

Doug, Other/Just Looking in Fontana, CA

Is it a good idea to purchase a house that is scheduled to be auctioned?

Asked by Doug, Fontana, CA Thu Jan 3, 2008

I recently found a list of foreclosed homes in my area that are scheduled to be auctioned. Is it possible/wise to try to purchase the home directly from the lender before the auction date, or should I attend the auction and try to purchase a home through the bidding process.

I'm looking to purchase my first home (and hoping to find a good deal in the process :-) ). Any help, ideas, or suggestions would be greatly appreciated! Thank you in advance!

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Either way can work, although I'd suggest trying to buy before the auction. Auctions can be unpredictable, emotional, and pressure-filled. In either case, do your homework, know what the comps are, and inspect the property beforehand. Remember, too, you're buying it in "as is" condition. And generally at an auction you're required to have certified funds, often 10% of your successful bid. If you buy beforehand, you're generally not faced with such a steep, immediate requirement.

One other piece of advice: If you do decide you want to trying buying at an auction, go to several auctions before the one you're interested in. See how they're conducted. See how many people turn up, and whether they seem to be like you, or whether they're investors. Just get a feel for it.

Finally, while you can find some good deals at auctions, you can also find some good deals on the MLS. And you can find some on your own, not listed at all. So, while it's fine to focus on auctions, recognize that they're not the single path to the great real estate deal.

Good luck.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 3, 2008
Don Tepper, Real Estate Pro in Burke, VA
MVP'08
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