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Buying a Foreclosure Property

If you're looking for real estate bargains, a foreclosure is the way to go. (To understand more about foreclosures click here.)

Here are 10 easy steps to buying a foreclosed property.

  • Step 1: Get Pre-Approval: Secure financing prior to searching for foreclosed properties. Figure out how much you are qualified to borrow. Being pre-approved for a purchase will enhance your negotiations on the home.
  • Step 2: Give yourself enough time to find the right foreclosed properties. Locate properties scheduled for foreclosure sales by checking local newspaper classified ads for listings under Foreclosure Notices, Auction Sales or Sheriff's Sales.
  • Step 3: Notify local real estate agents and attorneys that you're interested in purchasing foreclosed properties.
  • Step 4: Check with local lending institutions and government agencies - such as the Federal Housing Administration, Veterans Administration or Department of Housing and Urban Development - about foreclosed properties in your area.
  • Step 5: Investigate foreclosure proceedings in your state.
  • Step 6: Inspect the foreclosed property to determine its condition and market value; obtain sales prices of comparable properties in the area from a local real estate agent.
  • Step 7: Determine ownership, identify potential problems and research any existing liens by conducting a title search on the foreclosed property.
  • Step 8: Contact the trustee of the foreclosure sale to inquire about the minimum bid the lender will accept.
  • Step 9: Determine how you'll finance the foreclosed property or find out if the current loan is assumable.
  • Step 10: Make an offer on the foreclosed property by bidding at the foreclosure auction or submitting a sealed bid to a lender after the foreclosure sale. Letting the owners of real estate foreclosures property know that you have been pre-approved will speed your negotiations along.