If a house is set to be sold at auction, is that final ? or is there anyway to acquire it before the auction ?

Asked by Mark, Tucson, AZ Sun Jun 15, 2008

If there is a way to buy it before the auciton, can you please explian how to go about that. I have one more questions if you dont mind, I'm in the process of buying a house that is owned by a bank, I searched and found the house and contacted the bank and worked out the final price. The house was being offered for about 695,000 and they agreed to 627,000. My question is : should I do this without a real estate agent , since Iam the one who did all the work ? or is it better if I do get one for this purchase ?

Thank you

Help the community by answering this question:

+ web reference
Web reference:


Heidi Guyton, Agent, Tucson, AZ
Sun Jun 15, 2008
There is so much more than just the purchase price to be agreed upon, & to be dealt with throughout the transaction process until the day of recordation. Unless you are very familiar with real estate transactions, or bank real estate contracts, I feel there is always a need to get professional assistance. At this point with you already agreeing to a price with the bank, you would be responsible to pay the realtors fee which would be over and above the agreed upon price.
1 vote
Michael Oliv…, Agent, Tucson, AZ
Thu Nov 13, 2008
Depends on what you think. Banks are trying to get the best deal they can for them not you...The real issue with REO/Foreclosure is figuring out if it is a good deal, and then doing the competent due diligence to make certain your getting what you think you are. If you’re not an agent I'm not sure how you figure all that stuff out. The market is very difficult and sometimes I have to check my own work 3x's just to make sure I know it is the best conclusion I can come to with the info I have. If I have to triple check things and I have 200+ closed deals worth of experience……. So if you don’t want the agent help make sure you do your diligence very well (seriously).One more thought, if you do it yourself and you mess up you have only yourself to blame, if you do it with a real estate agent he could be (most likely will be) liable for a lot of things regarding that transaction keep that in mind.

I have written a lot more on my blog all about REO/ Foreclosures if you need more info check that out as a starting point.
0 votes
Scott Godzyk, Agent, Manchester, NH
Sat Nov 1, 2008
Usually the only way to buy before an auction is either the owner owes less than market value and can sell however in most cases they owe more and cant work with you or you buy the mortgage from the bank at a discount and you foreclose. As far as your other question you should never buy anything if you do not feel comfortable, if you have the ability to negotiate, confirm what tryue market value is and know that you are below it and can get your financining or pay cash and review your closing docs and do the title search you dont need anyone, if you cant you should have a buyer broker. in most cases you can negotiate it so that it does not cost you anything out of pocket as teh buyer agent gets paid at closing from the listing agent. This way you will have someone looking oout for you and guide you through the buying process. Good Luck with your purchase.
Web Reference:  http://www.ScottSellsNH.com
0 votes
Harrison K.…, Agent, Irvine, CA
Sat Nov 1, 2008
Mark ... we know several good Realtor agents in Tucson. You should hire a qualified Realtor. If you don't know anyone there, let me know. I would send you references. Best wishes on your home search in Tucson.
Harrison K. Long
Realtor and broker associate
Coldwell Banker Previews
0 votes
Cassandra Me…, , Newport Beach, CA
Sun Jun 15, 2008
Hi Mark,
It is possible for the bank to postpone the trustee's sale if they agree to do a short sale...that is when the bank will accept less than what is owed on the loan. However if there is a second loan, and it has default insurance, they, bank number two, would never agree to a short sale, because the insurance would pay them, the full amount of the second loan.
If it is not a Trustee's Sale and is already bank owned, then it is possible. Quite often REO's that are listed with an agent on the mls will get pulled, and all offers on it are put on hold... how long?? Who knows? They will then put it up for auction, with a 5-10% premium to the auctioneers. If it doesn't sell, then they will put it back on the mls. It's quite frustrating to the agents and buyers waiting in limbo.
Always, always, always, use a Realtor. The laws, addendums, and guidelines are changing constantly as the foreclosures increase. Also, a Realtor can provide you with the most recent comps to insure that you are not paying more than what it is worth. Realtors can also negotiate with the bank to pay for some closing costs as well as any other damages the property may have. Just because the banks say “Sold As-Is” doesn’t mean they won’t pay.

Good Luck
0 votes
George Szkup, , Tucson, AZ
Sun Jun 15, 2008
As a rule, auction dates are “set in concrete”. However, one can always attempt to purchase a house prior to auction. House purchase process takes time and should be started as early as possible. If one was buying for cash, did waive appraisal and house inspection (not a smart decision) it still takes time to do tile search. Theoretically, one could purchase a house without going through title search (not wise) but Title Company would not insure title and this would cause additional problems when you try to sell the house. In addition, communication with a bank/lender is usually slow and difficult. In my opinion, process of buying a home scheduled for auction should start minimum six weeks before the “due date”.
Getting a loan for a house slated for auction may not be difficult but satisfying lender requirements may be impossible. Lender will demand appraisal. If any problems are found, lender will insist on repairs and seller usually does not have any money. If seller is a bank/lender they always sell property in “as-is” condition - your lender will not "buy" that.. In addition, they would not turn on utilities so home inspector could not do total inspection.

As for the question whether you should work with a real estate professional – ALWAYS!
As a buyer you do not pay commission so service is free. Exception will be your present deal with the bank because commission was not factored in the agreed upon sale price.
It may be possible for you to get an agent on reduced commission but it would have to be paid by you.
George Tucson Home Advisor LLC, Realtors serving Buyers in Tucson and Sierra Vista area for 14 years. 682-8874
Visit http://www.DestinationTucson.biz and http://www.LuxuryTucsonRealEstate.NET
0 votes
Mark, Home Buyer, Tucson, AZ
Sun Jun 15, 2008
Please note that the auctions I'm referring to are not necessarily bank houses, these are the auctions held at the court house (trustee sale), so is there a way to acquire them before the auction? Or I have to wait 3 month for the auction to buy them?

0 votes
John Gordon, Agent, Mesa, AZ
Sun Jun 15, 2008
Both are very good questions. Most of the time there is no way to pull a house back off auction if it is a bank owned home. The banks pull them from agents and put them on auctions, sometimes even when there is a contract on them.

The second, if you are under a contract to buy it direct from the bank, great, it makes more money for them if they do not pay asset management companies. For you I would be very sure you are getting a good deal, appraisals in a depreciating market are always high. It would be wise to talk to a real estate professional to be sure you are getting a good deal. We have offices in Tucson, if you send me an email direct, I can find the one nearest to you.

Good luck.
0 votes
Search Advice
Ask our community a question

Email me when…

Learn more