Home foreclosures are far a few between theses days but they are still out there. They can be home run investments, but, if you don’t do your due diligence, they can just as easily be the investment you most regret.
First, consider the source of the foreclosure. There are tons of online resources for foreclosure lists, but they are not all equal to say the least. You need to make sure that the list you’re using (especially if it is one you are paying for) isn’t an old, outdated list. All foreclosures are public record, and if it’s been public knowledge for some time, then you’ll be far down on the list of letters those homeowners will be receiving and will likely go right in the trash.
The public courthouse records will always be the most accurate, but if you don’t want to spend your days down at the courthouse thumbing through their records, find a competent online resource who provides you with fresh lists.
Next, know what you’re looking for. A property can look like a great deal from the initial number, but it could just as easily be a losing proposition Knowing your search criteria means you won’t invest in a property that’s not a fit for you. Not every house going to be a perfect fit, so don’t be blinded by what looks like an amazing investment, when, in fact, it’s not a deal for you.
Finally, it’s time to investigate. When you find a property that matches your criteria on paper, we highly suggest you go take a look at the house, especially if you don’t have a lot of experience buying foreclosure properties. You may be able to avoid the courthouse auction all together if you can get in front of the folks that want to sell my Denton County house or sell my Collin County house before the actual sale.
Although you might not be able to get inside the house, you will want to get a good feel for the area, the community, and you can get a good idea of the property’s condition just by checking out the exterior doing a drive by.
It always helps to know the history of the foreclosure – how long has it been since the lender filed, how long were the owners behind on their payments. This information will give you another glimpse into how the property may have been treated.
Be sure that you always overestimate the repairs, especially with these foreclosure houses. Folks that aren’t paying their mortgage generally aren’t keeping up the their house maintenance either. Foreclosures can and are great investments, as long as you walk into them with eyes wide open and prepare for everything.