Is it really possible to purchase a foreclosed home that does not look like a complete "dump"? any of you guys know of any cases?

Asked by Rainy, North Carolina Thu Jul 1, 2010

where lets say if the cost of the home was $120,000 it foreclosed at $80,000 and did not look bad. I am asking because all the stuff I see online looks absolutely horrible.

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Brandy Shelly, , Tipton, IN
Tue Aug 10, 2010
Of course my standards my be lower than some, but I just had an offer accepted on a "dump" today. Wasnt even serious, I currently live in a mobile home and was just looking to maybe possibly buy some land to move my mobile home to get out of the dreaded trailor park. Got to looking at houses in the listings here on trulia while looking for land listings. Found a house listed at 29,900 with over 2000 square feet. Just for fun went and took a look at it, actually kinda hoping it would be totally horrible so we could put off this buying a house nonsense, haha. Yes it needs a new roof, some carpets are beyond salvaging with a cleaner, and some other pretty minor cosmetic things, but to our huge surprise it wasnt too terrible, again according to our standards, even had 4 bedrooms. Offered 24k yesterday and the bank accepted it this morning. 5k for the new roof and roughly another 3-4k for carpeting here and there and other minor cosmetic things and we're gonna have an excellent (to our standards haha) home for our family of 5.

While doing research on the property I discovered the previous owner lived there roughly 7 years, appears they didnt really tear the house up, but just didnt keep up with the little things that needed to be done, and after getting foreclosed on the house had been sitting empty for roughly a year or so. Couple years ago before everything crashed around here the property was valued at over 91k.
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Dan Pittsenb…, Agent, Bellingham, WA
Tue Aug 10, 2010
Hi Rainy,
The REO world is an interesting one. There are lots of horrible condition homes and lots of great condition, sometimes even brand new repos and everything in between. The market is also loaded with fantastic buys in all catagories - repos, shorts sales and "normal" sales. You just need to keep looking and you'll find something that works for you. The super fantastic, unbelievable, 50%+ below market value homes in good condition will be far and few between. You may find one but there's lots of folks looking. If you want a "good" deal on a home in good condition you will have no trouble. If you find something for $80K that's surrounded by $120K+ homes and/or was a $120K home itself, most likely it's going to be dump and in horrible condition or it would be listed at a higher price say in the $110K range. Repo or not every seller wants to get whatever they can for the properties they are selling.
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Linda DeRusha, Agent, Garner, NC
Thu Jul 29, 2010
Yes, it is possible to find foreclosures that are in good condition. Sometimes foreclosures are almost new, sometimes these houses are older and not taken care of. You need to have a buyer agent to be helping you look through all the online listings. You do not pay for the services of a buyer agent. The seller pays the buyer agent commission. Give me a call if I can be of help to you in your search for a new home.
Linda DeRusha
Coldwell Banker Advantage
Clayton, NC
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Larry Story, Agent, Greensboro, NC
Fri Jul 2, 2010

One thing you are going to find is that the good ones do not last long at all. What you need really is a buyer's agent helping you find them as soon as they enter the market. Actually a good agent finds them before they hit the market. I do know that if you are serious about buying one and want a good one then you need to be prepared to buy. Are your funds in order or the lender ready? I see excellent ones everyday but they will not last a week or two on the market. Believe me you are not the only one out there looking. If you do not have an agent already I work with one in your area that does an excellent job. If you like just contact me through my profile or one of my other websites listed below.

Hope this helps,
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Pam Smith, Agent, Duncanville, TX
Thu Jul 1, 2010
Hi Rainy, you can absolutely purchase a foreclosure that is not a dump. Not only are some houses in good condition at the time of foreclosure, many of the banks are rehabbing their REO (real estate owned) properties. I list and sell some REO properties, and I often have properties that get a face lift before we go on the market. Freddie Mac does a lot of this, as do some others. These rehabbed properties tend to go quickly because the banks are still pricing the house to move, and buyers recognize the value. Look for some key words in the MLS descriptions - approved for renovation is a term often used for the rehabbed properties. Also, some home builders have gone out of business and there are new construction houses out there that are bank-owned and on the market. Whatever you buy, be sure you hire a licensed inspector to do a thorough inspection of the house before you close escrow. The bank may not do any repairs based on the results of the inspection, but then again it never hurts to ask. At any rate, your inspection is important so you know what you are getting. Hope you find this helpful! Pam
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David Chiles, Other Pro, Los Angeles, CA
Thu Jul 1, 2010
Rainy, thank you for your question about foreclosure homes. Please be advised that purchasing a foreclosure property is a difficult process. There are some good deals on foreclosure homes. A foreclosure property sells for about 28% less than market value. This means that a house that would sell for 100k sells for 72k as a foreclosure.

I suggest looking at bank and other lien holder websites for information about foreclosure properties.
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