Buyer Beware

Foreclosures have been a hot topic for the past three years.  At first, I was afraid of them.  They were an unknown product and I wasn't sure how to navigate a successful sale.  As they became more mainstream and I gained more experience, they became less alarming.  Foreclosures were part of the market that was here to stay.  They were excellent deals.  In a city where good property is often really expensive, it was an attractive method for a lot of buyers to break into the market.  Now, foreclosures are a floundering mess.  National banks stopped foreclosures in recent weeks due to faulty paperwork.  Agents who have made careers on foreclosures are watching their business wither as banks sort out the mess.

I work with a lot of first time home buyers and we often start our search with foreclosures.  After viewing four or five abandoned, decrepit properties, they're over it.  Frequently, the amount of work to make a foreclosure livable is beyond their comfort level.  Not all foreclosures are bad.  I know plenty of people who've purchased a foreclosure and have had a good result.  

After reading this article in the NY Times, I'm glad I don't have any foreclosure deals on the books.  I think everyone should follow their advice:  Avoid foreclosures until the dust settles.  Otherwise, they're a risky proposition.

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