Looking for a foreclosure or REO property in ?

What is an REO?

REO is Real Estate Owned. These are houses that have been through foreclosure which the bank or mortage company now owns. This differs from real estate up for foreclosure auction. If you buy a property during a foreclosure sale, you must pay at least the loan balance plus any interest and other fees added during the foreclosure process. The buyer must also be able to pay with cash in hand. And on top of all that, you'll get the property entirely as is. That possibly may consist of prevailing liens and even current residents that need to be kicked out.

A REO, on the other hand, is a much neater and attractive transaction. The REO property didn't find a buyer during foreclosure auction. The lender now owns it. The bank will see to the elimination of tax liens, evict occupants if needed and generally plan for the issuance of a title insurance policy to the buyer at closing. Do be aware that REOs may be exempt from normal disclosure requirements. For instance, in Calfornia, banks are not required to give a Transfer Disclosure Statement, a document that typically requires sellers to tell you about any defects of which they are informed.

Are REO's a bargain in Mineral Wells?

It is commonly presume that any REO must be a bargain and an opportunity for easy money. This isn't always true. You have to be very careful about buying a REO if your intent is profit from the sell. While it's true that the bank is often anxious to sell it quickly, they are also strongly encouraged to get as much as they can for it. When pondering the value of a REO, you need to look closely at comparable sales in the neighborhood and be sure to take into account the time and cost of any repairs or remodeling needed to prepare the house for resale. The bargains with money making potential exist, and many people do very well flipping foreclosures. But there are also many REO's that are not good buys and may lose money.

Ready to make an offer?

Most banks have a REO department that you'll work with in buying a REO property from them. Commonly the REO department will use a listing agent to get their REO properties listed on the local MLS. Prior to making your offer, you'll want to contact either the listing agent or REO department at the bank and learn as much as you can about what they know about the condition of the property and what their process is for accepting offers. Since banks typically sell REO properties "as is", you may want to include an inspection contingency in your offer that gives you time to check for hidden damage and terminate the offer if you find it.

As with making any offer on real estate, your offer may be more attractive if you can include documentation of your ability to pay, such as a pre-approval letter from a lender. Once you've presented your offer, you can expect the bank to respond with a counter offer. From there it will be your choice whether to accept their counter, or make another counter offer. Understand, you'll be dealing with a process that usually involves multiple people at the bank, and they don't work evenings or weekends. It's not uncommon for the process of offers and counter offers to take days or even weeks.

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