You can use my website to search foreclosures and contact me to set up a time to take a look or have me research some info for you. I am a member of RealtyTrac which is the leading provider of foreclosure information.
The most common type of foreclosure property you'll encounter in your home search is a Real Estate Owned, or REO, property. REOs are properties that have been foreclosed and are now owned by the bank.
REOs may be vacant or in need of repair. But often they look and feel just like other homes for sale, and they're listed by a real estate agent. Although they're typically sold as-is, it's not uncommon for an REO to be in move-in condition. But the process of buying an REO is different than other home purchases. An REO property is one that's been foreclosed on and is now owned by the bank.
REO properties fall into two categories:
Move-in condition: The home is in acceptable condition and not in need of rehabilitation. You could buy this property and move in quickly.
Damaged: A damaged REO generally needs repairs and rehabilitation before you can move in. These types of REOs are attractive to investors and some buyers who aren't daunted by the work involved in rehabbing a property. Often, you will get a bigger discount on damaged REO properties, but you have to consider refurbishing costs.
Pros of buying REOs:
• Often, you'll pay a below-market price for the property.
• The process is similar to a "normal" home purchase in that you can secure financing using a traditional mortgage. (Buying an REO property is nothing like buying a foreclosure property at auction with cash.)
• You'll be able to do inspections and secure financing before completing the purchase.
Cons of buying REOs:
• Many banks will require an "as-is" purchase, and if there are problems or necessary repairs, paying for them is your responsibility.
• The process can take longer than a regular home sale.