how to buy a foreclosure at the courthouse steps

for more information on how to buy an Atlanta property at the courthouse steps our #2 Top Myth of 2012 and what to expect when buying a home at the courthouse steps.

Just like any other investment, buying a property at the courthouse steps offers the greatest potential return on investment; however, it also holds the highest risk to the investor, due to the limited means of investigating as mentioned above.
Also strongly recomended is that someone interested in doing this to actually play a Monopoly Game version and follow a few properties from beginning to end – actually drive to the properties and at least look at them from the curb, check title, etc., know what the property is worth and if the house makes it to the steps listen to what happens when it’s cried.
However, you can and should order a title report to determine any liens that are on the property because when you purchase a property at the courthouse steps you get everything that comes with it (such as liens, an additional mortgage, past due taxes, etc.). In addition, a survey would determine the lot lines and if there are any easements or encroachments on the property.
It is definitely best to wait until it goes into foreclosure to have less hassle and most likely better deal! I would say the courthouse steps process is more for an investor, not your typical buyer.
I concur! I tried to assist a buyer in purchasing a home on the court house steps only to find out there was a second mortgage on the property the seller (whom we had been in contact with on a regular basis) did not inform us of.
So if a buyer is smart, very well prepared, all due diligence done & follows the rule “Buyer Beware” ; then he can definitely get a great deal at the courthouse steps.
Attending a sale on the courthouse steps is like going to a zoo during feeding time…a lot of hungry buyers looking to get the “meal” of the century.
Thank you for unveiling the urban myth! It’s such a difficult process to explain to a buyer and they always think that they will get a deal at the courthouse steps.
If you’re thinking of purchasing a property at the courthouse steps, it’s very important that you do your Due Diligence.
Auctions that are utilized by the banks to clear foreclosure property and auctions on the court house steps which is the final step to the foreclosure process.
Homes sold in foreclosure on the court steps are sold for all cash! "Ordinary People" are advised to sterr clear of them.
Best bet is for a buyer to work with a good agent and focus on homes that have been taken back by the bank, having failed to sell at auction.
Record Information Services has the information you need to begin your research for foreclosed properties.  We gather the pre-foreclosure when it is newly filed, follow that recording through to sale and update our reports weekly.  Liens and other important information is also provided for you to make decisions early on whether you will want to invest it a particular property.
Step five.       To buy the property at the foreclosure auction you would ignore all liens that were recorded junior in time to the one going to sale.
Step three.    Determine the property’s fair market value (after fix-up) from local comparable sales.
We got a bidder’s card, talked to the bank reps and found out that one house we saw and researched had an opening bid within our budget and under the assessed value of the home — so we bid on it! Two other investors counter-bid a few times, but we won the bid and got our first house at the foreclosure auction.
My husband and I have just recently achieved our long-time goal of buying a foreclosed house, turning it into a rental property and creating a steady stream of income from the monthly rent we collect (at 17 percent profit on the initial cash investment every year).
Very good post! I have thought about buying a foreclosed property, but really don’t have the time to invest in researching the area, heading to the courthouse, renovating the house, etc.
After you identify a few houses in your chosen location or size range, research each offered property’s sales and tax history, as well as its current assessed value on the County Property Appraiser’s website, which are all public record.
Once you hear this number you will need to evaluate on the spot whether purchasing the property is financially feasible given your cash budget, current market conditions, the research you did on the property and your personal criteria and plan for the investment.
Our county publishes a twice-weekly list of the properties to be sold at the foreclosure auction held each Tuesday and Thursday at 11 a.m. A large portion of our time each week is spent physically viewing the properties and researching them online or in the courthouse books.
Next, research each property owner (also listed on the County Appraiser’s property record page) online via the County Clerk of Courts Public Record Search because whatever that the owner owes regarding that property outside of the loans (liens, back taxes, etc.), you will owe when you purchase a foreclosure home.
Instead, you need to start the bidding at the acceptable opening bid amount for each property, which is the lowest amount the bank is willing to accept for a property at the auction that day.
People get the idea they can buy a house at auction for $100 because they have heard that someone “bid on behalf of the plaintiff (the bank) for $100.” But auction buyers cannot counter the bank bid at $150 dollars.
What if the previous owner took steps to deal with drainage that caused a problem for the next door neighbor and you will be required to put it back.  What if there is an easement to a neighbor accross the front yard, or if cars can not be parked in a certain spot or the fence is illegal and must come down.  (just listing a few things I can remember finding out about during the course of a property transaction- these are real issue that can happen, they might be rare, but keep in mind in a foreclosure it is sometimes things like this that made the owner decide to just walk – between the cost of the home and the unfixable issue…they left)- waiting until foreclosure is done where you can buy it NOT in a rush and have time to investigate and discover such issues is highly recommended.
Auctioneer Jay Gafner leads a foreclosure auction in front of the San Diego County Courthouse as potential investors, clad in Hawaiian shirts for the auction’s "Aloha Thursday," chat in the foreground.
But there’s also been an increase in the number of sales that banks have canceled, frustrating buyers who’ve researched a property only to get to the steps and discover it’s not for sale that day.
At a time when normal real estate deals are muddled with extra negotiations and delays, there’s something striking about the unadorned procedure underway every day at the courthouse steps in downtown San Diego, El Cajon and Oceanside.
“They look at it and look at each other and we’re shaking our heads, but you just deal with what it is,” said Ward Hannigan, a mainstay in the local foreclosure scene since 1982 who now trains others how to win on the courthouse steps.
There’s been a growing number of auctioned homes selling at these auctions on the courthouse steps, rather than just going back to the bank.
During the auction, the bidders usually chat with their counterparts or bosses who are sitting at the computer researching the property while they’re at the courthouse bidding.
“This appears very primitive,” says Brad Tuck, an investor and a regular at auctions in downtown San Diego and in El Cajon.
Note that we’ve included data about all real estate transactions.  Why?  Because the important number is really the foreclosure rate – the percentage of total real estate transactions represented by foreclosures .   You’ll notice that the foreclosure rate was under 4% back in 2006 and 2007.  So far this year, the rate is almost 15%.  That means that nearly 15% of all real estate sales for the 1st quarter were bank foreclosure sales.  In Moore County, 90% of all foreclosure sales actually result in the bank just taking the property back – that counts as a foreclosure sale.  Then …… when the bank resells the property, that sale counts as a non-foreclosure sale of the same property!  So, at some point after a bank conducts an actual foreclosure sale, the same property will be sold again.
This report deals with foreclosure sales actually conducted by lenders – THAT IS, actual sales on the courthouse steps.   When you watch TV or read foreclosure reports in the newspapers, you are getting information about foreclosure filings.  Foreclosure filings don’t always result in actual foreclosures, so the information that you get is only part of the picture.  The only way to get the raw numbers is to go to the courthouse and review the records to get accurate and complete data.  We’ve done that for you – because we know how to do the research and we’re willing to take the time to do it.
Other states use non judicial foreclosure which means that the bank can foreclose on the property without taking homeowner to court.
Before placing a bid at a foreclosure auction, make sure that you understand whether or not there are liens on the property that will be passed on to the new buyer.
Sometimes, the house still doesn’t sell for enough money at a foreclosure auction, so the bank ends up taking it back into their inventory where they will later list it with a real estate agent.
In order to understand the foreclosure auction process and learn how to make it a success for you, you must first start with research.
Most areas will not allow you to see the inside of the home prior to the foreclosure auction, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t drive by, check out the outside and look around the immediate area.
Once you have won a property at auction, speak with a real estate attorney or the auctioneer to find out what you need to do in order to take ownership of your new property.
Understanding the bidding process is one of the most important factors involved with being successful at a foreclosure auction.
A foreclosure auction is when the bank tries to sell off this past-due asset to a home buyer or investor.
Sometimes, you may find a property that is coming up for auction and the homeowner is still living in it.
Placing foreclosure sales online has the potential of a greater benefit to the community: Broadening the pool of buyers – a world-wide audience, no longer limited to just those bidders who can physically be present at the sale in the courtroom – could mean a possible increase in the number of interested bidders, and a higher selling price.
Starting July 14, 2009, Online Foreclosure Sales, a web-based service, moved sales of Sarasota County foreclosed property out of the physical courtroom and onto the World Wide Web.
After September 25, 2009, all Sarasota County foreclosed property brought to public auction and sale was made exclusively available through this online service.
Due to "proxy bidding" format, familiar to bidders on other auction sites, Online Foreclosure Sales allows a person to be in more than one place at a time and bids can be automated.
With whistles and chants meant to drown out the auctioneers, protesters gathered to decry all that leads up to the process of the selling of a foreclosed home on the courthouse steps.
"We tried to work with the bank, they told us one thing, we did what they asked us to do and when we finished, they changed their mind again," said Ronnie Coward who lost his home to foreclosure.
According to TMZ, foreclosure proceeding have started on the six-bedroom $2.4 million Oakland Hills mansion of former Oakland Raiders quarterback JaMarcus Russell.
This Order is necessary to ensure the safe, secure, and orderly use of and access to the Superior Court, County of San Diego courthouse facilities; to minimize activities which unreasonably disrupt, interrupt, or interfere with the orderly conduct of court business; and to promote the free ingress and egress at court facilities.
Trade group United Trustees Association, which has members in San Diego County, plans to correspond with court officials to outline the "detriment" it could cause trustee companies and borrowers, if the location is changed to a place that gets less exposure, said Michelle Mierzwa, a local member of the organization and part of the group’s legislative committee.
The daily disruptions prompted the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department, which provides security for the downtown courthouse, to recommend a ban on trustee sales at that facility, 220 West Broadway, and outside the Hall of Justice, 330 West Broadway.
Foreclosure auctions — a longtime fixture at courthouse steps in California and across the country — will be banned from downtown’s San Diego Superior Courthouse, starting Sept.
Because the risks associated with foreclosures are shifted to the buyer when buying at the trustees sale, this is a method that is really only suitable to highly experienced professional investors who have done their title work ahead of time, are buying with cash and are able to predict and budget for likely construction, marketing and other costs, as well as resale values without stepping foot in the house.
It’s been a nightmare.Several months ago we got a letter from Bayview stating ‘since we were having problems making our payment we might want to consider foreclosure,selling, etc’.Again all payments are up to date and never late.My husband (retired military) is in poor health and had a minor stroke when we got the letter.I called Bayview and the lady said it was standard procedure that they send the letter to everyone.After reading the horror stories re: Bayview online,I started paperwork with CitiMortgage to refinance in November.Bayview has not cooperated with Citi at all sending verification of our payments etc.Now they are saying we were over $2000 short in escrow(there was over $1600 in escrow in Oct) and they require us to have a minimum of $600 starting each year in escrow and wanting a lump sum payment of $2600 or our house payment will go from $577 up to over $800 a month.I’m so stressed over this mess I don’t know what to do.I’m just praying we get our refinance.Citimortgage even told these people how ‘unprofessional’ they are.We were doing fine paying our bills.Was just wondering if you have any knowledge of Bayview or complaints from anyone else.

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