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2014-08-19 14:56:55
Buying Utah Foreclosure Homes for Sale
Joel Carson

by Joel Carson
Utah Real Estate
President/Principle Broker

Hands holding keys and foreclosure home

I am frequently asked the question, “Can you really get a good deal on foreclosure properties?” The answer is, “Absolutely!” with one qualification, “If you know where to find them.” Shopping for Salt Lake City foreclosure properties isn’t difficult at all. Purchasing them doesn’t have to be complicated.

I thoroughly enjoy helping people purchase Salt Lake foreclosure homes because I like a good deal as much as the next guy; and, seeing my clients get a real bargain is a thrill for me.

There are major websites out there like Zillow and Trulia that list foreclosure properties; however, be warned: These are great sites for getting a sneak peek at the market, but information comes from public records. Those records aren’t always updated and you might inquire about 10 foreclosure properties before you find one that’s actually for sale if you don’t know how to read the listings. Unless a listing is clearly marked, “For Sale” and it includes an MLS (Multiple Listing Service) number, it is probably not available.

My recommendation is that you study up a little on just how Utah foreclosures work. There are a number of ways we can help you with foreclosures. There are some foreclosures with which we will be not help at all.

For a list of Wasatch Front Regional Multiple Listing Service (WFR-MLS) foreclosure properties throughout Utah, visit UTAH FORECLOSURE PROPERTIES. All of the homes are for sale (in rare cases, changes to official home records are not reflected when made within the last 24 to 48 hours.).

Here is a very simplified version of the foreclosure process in Utah:

NOTE: Utah Code Title 57 (Real Estate) Chapter 1 (Conveyances) can be accessed in its entirety online at: http://le.utah.gov/UtahCode/section.jsp?code=57-1).

1. Most foreclosures here are non-judicial

2. When a home owner falls behind in payments (usually two or three months), a lender will file what is known as a 'Notice of Default.' This is a warning, and it is a public document. Because it is a public document many websites like Zillow and Trulia pick up those notices and publish them to give people an advanced look at what might be coming onto the market.

3. The homeowner has three months from the time the Notice of Default is served to make satisfactory payment arrangements or sell the home.

4. After three months, the foreclosure trustee/attorney can sell that property at a public auction usually held at the county courthouse in which the home is located. A 'Notice of Sale' must be published no less than 10 days before the sale is scheduled. You might see foreclosure auctions listed on Zillow. These dates change often as lenders work with people to save their homes.

5. If the lender is not satisfied, the home is sold at auction. Very often the lender will buy the home do one of five things:

a. list it on the MLS for sale

b. sell it to another bank

c. sell it in a private transaction to a private buyer

d. list it on a specialty website

e. hold it in inventory when the market is overstocked with properties and list it at a later date

There are many ways to buy a foreclosure home. We can assist with a few of those ways:

1. When an individual decides to sell through a short sale, we can facilitate that sale. A short sale means the lender is willing to take less than is actually owed so the home can be sold to a new buyer before it is foreclosed. This usually happens after a Notice of Default is filed. This saves the bank thousands in legal expenses, so everybody gets a good deal: the homeowner is saved from foreclosure; the bank saves on legal expenses and associated fees; somebody gets a great deal on a home. We can help list these types of properties and can help people buy them when they are listed on the Wasatch Front Regional Multiple Listing Service (WFR-MLS).

2. When a lender purchases a home back at auction and re-lists it on the WFR-MLS we can help a buyer strike a deal to purchase it.

3. When a home foreclosure is handled through the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), that home will be listed at www.hudhomestore.com. Those homes are also often listed on the MLS. Joel Carson is HUD Certified and can help a buyer place a bid in just a few minutes. All homes on this website are for sale. HUD takes the highest net bid, period. This is a great way to buy a home because they can be bought with very little down payment and the terms are actually very simple.

You can also purchase a foreclosure home by:

1. attending a public foreclosure auction. Be aware, many of these auctions require significant down payments with the remaining balance owed within a day or two after a home is sold. Buyer's agents do not usually represent buyers in this process because commission is not generally a part of the equation.

2. approaching a bank directly about bank-owned foreclosure homes. We do not generally get involved in this kind of foreclosure sale. Some banks will work directly with private individuals, and some will not.

If you are shopping for a Utah foreclosure, REO, short sale or bank-owned property, please contact us today at 801-673-3333 or at 801-455-5555 for personal assistance.

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