Looking for a foreclosure or REO property in ?

What's an REO?

REO is short for Real Estate Owned. These are houses that have completed the foreclosure process and are presently held by the bank or mortgage company. This is unlike a property 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 accumulated 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 totally as is. That possibly will comprise existing liens and even current denizens that need to be thrown out.

A REO, conversely, is a more tidy and attractive deal. The REO property was unable to find a buyer during foreclosure auction. Now the bank 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. Take notice that REOs may be exempt from normal disclosure requirements. For example, in California, banks are exempt from giving a Transfer Disclosure Statement, a document that usually requires sellers to disclose any defects they are knowledgeable of.

Are REO's a bargain in Loveland?

It is frequently believed that any REO must be a good deal and an opportunity for easy money. This usually isn't true. You have to be prudent about buying a REO if your intent is to make money off of it. While it's true that the bank is usually anxious to sell it fast, they are also strongly encouraged to get as much as they can for it. When contemplating 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. It is possible to find REOs with money-making potential, and many people do very well buying and selling foreclosures. Still there are also many REO's that are not good buys and may not be money makers.

Ready to make an offer?

Most banks have a REO department that you'll work with in buying a REO property from them. Typically 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 find out as much as you can about what they know about the condition of the property and what their process is for taking offers. Since banks most commonly sell REO properties "as is", it may be in your best interest to include an inspection contingency in your offer that gives you time to check for hidden damage and cancel 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. After you've presented your offer, you can expect the bank to counter offer. Then it will be up to you to decide whether to accept their counter, or submit another counter offer. Understand, you'll be contending with a process that probably involves a group of people at the bank, and they don't work evenings or weekends. It's typical for the process of offers and counter offers to take days or even weeks.

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