A Few Things to Consider When Looking At Foreclosed Homes for Sale

In today’s real estate market, many potential buyers run across short sale homes and houses close to foreclosure. Some homes have already been foreclosed and are now for sale by financial institutions that own them.
While this leaves some potential buyers leery, it is potentially a good opportunity to find larger properties with plenty of space and amenities.




Property Neglect

Oftentimes, homes that have gone through foreclosure or are on the verge of it, are not in top condition. Small repairs have been neglected leaving potential buyers to wonder what else may be wrong with it. A careful walk-through with a home inspector would be helpful. Making a list of what needs to be fixed will help lessen the surprises after purchasing the property. The home’s exterior is often the most neglected. A few weeks of mowing the lawn and freshening up the flower beds will require little investment. For houses with siding, it could be more involved. Decide whether it needs to be pressure washed, painted or re-sided.



The roof is one of the most important and most expensive things to replace. Look for buckles, streaks and missing shingles. Potential buyers should find out when the roof was last serviced or replaced. Reshingling may be an option. A careful inspection of the attic interior will probably be very educational. If it looks sound, there are likely few problems, if any. Keep in mind that many mortgage companies will not approve financing on homes without a solid roof.


Working Appliances

Check to make sure that any appliances that will convey are in proper working condition. Ovens, washing machines and refrigerators may require repair or replacement after sitting dormant for a long period of time.


What Will Convey

Depending on whether the present homeowners are living in the house or not, there may be items inside that will convey that might not normally be part of the deal. For example, any appliances, hot tubs, above-ground swimming pools and window treatments could convey upon request, leaving more money for the buyers to invest on home improvements.

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Possible Shorter Closing Time

One advantage to a foreclosed property or a short sale is that the sellers are often in a hurry to unload their burden. Taking the time to make sure everything is in order is especially important for both parties. While everyone may have to move faster, a motivated buyer can take advantage of a quick turnaround. If they are not in a hurry, this will leave more time to prepare the property before moving into it.


If you do come across a home that is in need of repair, an 203k streamline mortgage may suit your needs as it allows for many repairs to be financed right into your mortgage.  For more information on this program, click here.

with contributions by: A. Jones

DISCLAIMER: Neither Indiana 203K Mortgages (Indiana203kMortgages.com) nor Luminate Home Loans is affiliated with any government agencies, including the FHA.