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Is there any place to get free foreclosure info?
Old 07-23-2007, 03:26 PM   #1
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Is there any place to get free foreclosure info?

Anyone know of any on-line sources to find out properties that are being foreclosed and/or being auctioned off? or bank-owned and for sale?

Most of the sites I have seen are pay only, and some aren't cheap...can't figure out why this info isn't made more widely available, and for free, since the sellers have an interest in getting that info out there....

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Old 07-23-2007, 04:02 PM   #2
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Sidebar discussion to this...are foreclosure homes really worth the trouble?

I have a friend of a friend thats trying to buy a home and is focused on foreclosures simply because he doesnt have enough money to buy a home in the area he's looking in. Seems he's always being outbid and the winning bid always seems a bit expensive for the property in question.

I talked with a couple of agents about it, and their take is that the best deal is to get the property before it forecloses, from the distressed seller. If the seller is willing and the bank is reasonable.

Otherwise, they said that banks these days are bundling their foreclosures up into lots of around 5 homes and selling them to other banks willing to take on the risk.

Their take was that very little of value was making it to the 'foreclosure homes' sales, and that those ended up selling within a few percent of their normal retail value, plus they were often beat up well past what a regular home was.

But thats just the northern cal area...I suppose things might be pretty different in other parts.

I guess in a roundabout way to answer your question Ed, it seems there isnt much money to be made in buying or selling a foreclosed home, but there might be some money to be made in selling information about foreclosures, which many seem to think are bargain buys for the bold home buyer. Seems to not be the case, at least according to the folks I've talked to and what i'm seeing with my friends friend.

Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
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Old 07-23-2007, 04:03 PM   #3
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Rule #1 never pay when it can be had for free.
Check out the following websites: Bank REOs - Locate Bank Owned REO properties & foreclosures - foreclosure.
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You can also ask your realtor for a list of foreclosures in the area as well. Some MLSs an agent can search key words like "bank owned" or "must sell" "below market" etc.
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Old 07-23-2007, 05:16 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by cute fuzzy bunny View Post
I guess in a roundabout way to answer your question Ed, it seems there isnt much money to be made in buying or selling a foreclosed home
I actually have no plans to buy/sell any foreclosed homes. *If* a great place came up and *if* it was a great deal, and *if* it was a house I'd like to own for a long time, I *might* buy one someday; especially if it was someplace that I might wish to vacation at once in a while. Besides that, I just like reading the details to keep a gauge on the market...same reason I read deed transfers, bankruptcy filings etc in the local newspaper...

If I had plans to actually buy/sell/flip these things, I'd probably shell out the money for one of these pay sites...but since I'm not, I'm looking for free...

Looks like Arif has some good suggestions on some free sites...I'll check them out.

I suspect you are right though...too many people trying to profit from foreclosures means that not too many deals unless you are lucky, motivated, and very knowledgeable about the ins and outs of the process.
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Old 07-23-2007, 08:05 PM   #5
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At least in our area a great many of the foreclosures are in poor physical condition, due not only to neglect, but also code and ordinance violations. Many I suspect have a disreputable past such as meth, etc that you as the proud new owners would be responsible for cleaning up.

A particular strategy that seems to have emerged here is for owners of older homes in poor shape that fail to sell for a year or more, to equity-strip with second (or greater) mortgages and then stop paying altogether - e.g. they just "sold" their home to the bank via foreclosure at remarkably close to the price they couldn't sell to a private party at. The bank(s) of course only did a drive-by appraisal (or perhaps just used a computer model) on these various secondary financings and hence will never get their money back in the foreclosure auction. Many of these homes are ultimately sold for the land value minus demo costs.

I wouldn't touch most of these "deals".
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Old 07-24-2007, 06:01 AM   #6
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Here are a few:

Wells Fargo's REOs: Premiere Asset Services
Countrywide: Properties Owned by Countrywide - REO Homes
Auction listing for a couple lenders: Foreclosed Properties - Foreclosed homes Distressed homes on Live Auction

I look at REO properties on-line. Not interested in pre-foreclosure or sherriff's sales.
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Old 07-24-2007, 08:22 AM   #7
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Stop making mortgage payments and they'll give you all sorts of "information"

Sorry, I couldn't help it.
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Old 07-24-2007, 08:34 AM   #8
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Florida has all of this information available through its public records laws, so check with your state's requirements.

Here, the local courthouse posts all homes pending forelosure with the date, locaton, etc, of when it will be auctioned. On line you can access the court filing, which includes the address and the outstanding costs (loan balance, accrued fees, etc).

We can also get the owners purchase price and date and the current tax assessment information on the property appriasers web site.

In more rural communities, without electronic resources, you have to go the courthouse/property appraiser office for this information, but as public record and available, though you may need to pay approx $1/ page for anything you want copied.
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Old 07-25-2007, 01:29 PM   #9
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Been my experiance that the pay sites aren't worth crap ... they attempt to cover such a large area that they do nothing well. Sites I've tried are either late listing the property (ie. it's sold) or are filed under the wrong zip code. Either way you're wasting your time.

The best free info is from the lenders themselves. They have the incentive and the resources to move these properties off thier books.

Here's some others I use:

Resources: Fannie Mae-Owned Property Search

FDIC Real Estate for Sale

Home Steps , A Freddie Mac Unit: Feature Search

IRS Auction - Main Menu

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