Waiting until the bank buys it at the steps and then lists it with a realtor CLEANS UP THE TITLE. You are not obligated for the back taxes or any other cloud on the title. You get to inspect the property--they probably won't fix anything and you purchase AS-IS, but you get to see what you are paying for. YOU WILL MOST LIKELY GET A BETTER PRICE. When the bank buys it back at the steps they took the hit on their financial books. When they sell it they actually have income to offset the loss.
I work with a lot of investors and the all tell me the same thing...buying sight unseen and being surprised by a last minute lien is never pleasant.
Work with someone experienced in foreclosures or shortsales and find a great deal! Sorry, I'm not licensed in CA.
Realtytrac does what it is set up to do â€“ they sell specific information they collect to interested parties - inform people about what is coming up for foreclosure and REO properties.
A few problems they have â€“ the information collected are recorded notices of defaults which can be outdated; they can also be only one of several liens happened to be recorded at the time; the listed price you see are often the amount owned on that one lien the NOD is against, and that lien can be 1st, 2nd or whatever is defaulted on (thatâ€™s why you sometimes see $30,000 for a $300,000 house). The price does not have much correlation to what the house is worth.
They charge $49.99 a month for the information your Realtor can get from the tile company, maybe a better format and your Realtor will have a way to check on certain information about the sales history, the property info and certain loan info on the property. Eventually, most of the properties that are foreclosed on become what we called Bank Owned (REO) properties which are usually listed and sold through Realtors because banks are not in the business of selling homes.
My suggestion is to find a reliable Realtor and have he/she helps you with your search and purchase of distressed properties.
Let me know,
Charita King 562-276-8681
The homes on RealtyTrac are NOT being offered for sale, they are homes in various stages of the foreclosure process. Many of these homes will have multiple mortgages, so if the mortgage showing up on RealtyTrac is not the first mortgage, be aware that the first mortgage holder must be satisfied before these lesser lien holders can get paid.
The majority of these homes will not end up being auctioned on the courthouse steps. They will either be sold as a short sale (pre-foreclosure) via a listing on the MLS, or the "sellers" (current owners) will work out a payment plan with their bank and remain in the home. The foreclosure process in California is a lengthy one, lasting a minimum of 120 days before an auction date can be set. Often the auction date is extended while the current owners list their homes for sale as short sales and accept offers from potential buyers.
If you're looking to buy short sales (pre-foreclosures) and bank-owned homes, check with a local Realtor. They'll be able to provide you with the latest information on short sale and bank-owned homes for sale, and help you through the lengthy short-sale process.
Personally I think Realtytrac is for you if you have the plan and money to buy several foreclosed homes. I signed up years ago and actually went to some of the auctions I received info on from realtytrac. It takes a lot of time and energy to purchase the homes from the info you get there. If you don't really know what you're doing, its not as beneficial as it is to an investor with experience purchasing foreclosures.