How to Find Foreclosure Listings

It is much easier to find foreclosures in a failing and depressed real estate market. But it is also possible in a strong market. The most important point to remember is that not every foreclosure is a bargain. Learn how to see the diamonds waiting to be polished. The best places to find them are listed below.

  1. Real Estate Agents. If you are inexperienced in finding and buying foreclosures, you might want to hire skilled real estate agents for assistance. They have special access to tools like the Multiple Listing Service that make buying easier. Alternatively, you can ask your agent to search for real estate owned by lenders or REOs.

  2. Real Estate Signs. Drive through distressed neighborhoods and read the signs. Anything with foreclosure, bank-owned, or bank repo are up for grabs. Call the agent on the sign and ask about the property, as well as other foreclosures that may be coming on the market once the bank approves the list price.
  3. Bank Websites. The bigger banks hold a list of foreclosed properties on their website. However, some banks will not sell to individual buyers and prefer selling discounted packages to investors.
  4. Government Agencies. Check up with the HUD, Fannie Mae, and Department of Treasury to find foreclosures. Note that some government agencies require you to retain the services of a real estate broker to make an offer to purchase seized homes.
  5. Auction Houses. Some auction houses sell over 100 homes in a day. The most popular inventories belong to J.P King, Bid4Assets, Williams & Williams, United Country Auction Services, and Real Estate Disposition Corporation. Just remember to keep your focus and avoid getting caught in the auction frenzy – fail and you will end up paying higher prices for the foreclosures that you find.