How to Buy a Home in Foreclosure

List: Posted: 09/30/11

You can buy a foreclosure home and save money doing so.  However, the process is not a simple one and there are many risks involved in the process.  If you want to find an inexpensive home to buy, this could be the right way to go for you, but you will need to take steps to protect your financial investment and to reduce your overall risks.

Important Steps for Buyers

The following tips can help you through the process on step at a time.  You may even find that this is a great way to actually turn a profit, but only if you take steps to protect yourself.

* Start by finding a list of properties in foreclosure.  You can do this in several ways.  Some listing services, both local and online, offer a list of properties in foreclosure.  You can contact local real estate agents to help you with the process of locating these homes, too.  Look for local auctions, often advertised in your local paper that may include foreclosed homes.

* Once you find a home you are interested in, do a title search.  This process allows you to ensure that the title is free and clear from any risk of ownership from someone else.  Your real estate agent or attorney can do this for you or you can visit the local county clerk’s office to do it on your own.

* Get a home inspection when possible before buying.  If you buy a foreclosure property at auction, it may not be possible to have a full home inspection.  However, in all other sales, you should have the ability to inspect the home and decide whether to buy it at that point, even after putting an offer on the home.

* Know your budget.  Get estimates for the costs to repair the property and to get it up to code.  Not all foreclosure properties are going to be in poor condition, but some can be.  You need to know the cost of getting the property into a livable condition if you hope to save money or even make money on the transaction.

* Understand the process.  If you are buying from a lender, the lender may take up to 60 days to go through the closing process.  If you are buying a home that just hit the market, know your state's redemption laws, which allow owners to reclaim the property within 30 to 60 days after loss.  You should also have your own financing in place to buy the property before you even seek out a home to purchase.

Take Care When Choosing a Home

When you buy a foreclosure home, you may be able to buy for less than what the property cost should it sell at full price.  However, not every foreclosed home is going to offer the same benefits and potential.  In fact, you may just find it is too costly to buy these homes. 


Consider all of your options and buy because the property is worth investing in, especially if you plan to live in the home long-term.  Otherwise, you could be wasting your money.

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          • 20937 Ashburn Rd Ste 200
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          The material in this article is for informational purposes only. The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of See Additional Information

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