In the United States, most properties are sold through professional real estate agents. However, many list their homes or properties for sale by owner. Most do this because they have complete freedom over the sale. They can choose how much they want to sell the property for, to who, and when.
With the current state of the real estate market, many selling their homes are doing so to avoid foreclosure. They simply cannot afford the property anymore. A sale prevents foreclosure.
If you are looking to buy your first home for cheap or make a profit through renting or reselling, you should target these types of homes. Unfortunately, it isn’t always easy. Most home sellers will not advertise upfront that they are selling their home to avoid foreclosure.
First, you need to schedule a meeting. Ask to for a showing of the property. Start a conversation. Be friendly. In no time at all, you may have the full story behind the sale. It may be due to relocation, but it may also be due to foreclosure. If this is mentioned, ask out of curiosity for the mortgage lender’s name. Be discrete about it. “Who is your mortgage lender? They really aren’t willing to work with you?”
If you like the property in question, inquire more about the selling price. Is it inline with the home’s appraised value? It should be. In fact, it should be less. A homeowner who is selling their home to avoid foreclosure should be willing to take just about anything. Their main goal should be to pay off their mortgage. This mean you should get a good deal. If not, try bargaining first. If the outstanding mortgage is a relatively low or affordable figure, offer that as your asking price. As a good deed, offer to throw in an extra thousand or so for the cost of relocation or first and last months rent. If you are met with a refusal, you may just move on. But, you do have another option.
As previously stated, you want to get the name of the mortgage lender. Although a little deceitful, it can result in a low-cost home or property for you. What you do is approach the lender. Speak to a loan officer. State you tried to buy the home, but the sellers were asking too much. Emphasize your interest in the home, but state your unwillingness to pay an unfair value. See what the mortgage lender can do for you. In fact, suggest a short sale. Only do this if the borrow and current home seller outright stated that their home will be foreclosed on.
A foreclosure short sale is an agreement between the mortgage lender and the homeowner. They agree to sell the home for less than the outstanding mortgage on the home. Borrowers accept this to avoid foreclosure. The home sells and they don’t have a foreclosure listed on their credit report and bankruptcy is avoided. Mortgage lenders agree to short sales because they want their money, even if less than what is owed. It also saves them from long and costly foreclosure proceedings, where many borrowers and occupants become difficult and unruly.
If you approach a financial lender acquiring about a short sale, it will not happening right away. Remember, the borrower is still trying to sell their home independently. With the poor state of the real estate market, many homebuyers are unable to secure needed financing. This means that many homes sit on the real estate market for months. It may take a month or more or threats from a mortgage lender about foreclosure before the borrower agrees to a short sale. But, if you approached the mortgage lender and already made an offer, you should be the first person they contact!
Convincing a mortgage lender to agree to a short sale on a property you do not own is risky. You risk insulting the mortgage lender and the homeowner, but if you want to profit from soon-to-be foreclosed properties, you must take risks.