For buyers, the Atlanta real estate market has never been better. Getting in at the bottom is tricky as you want to get the lowest interest rate possible, AND the lowest home price possible. Interest rates can’t get any lower, and foreclosure prices are where you can score the best deals.

A foreclosure is a property owned by the bank. The banker who is trying to sell the foreclosed property has no emotional attachment to that property. The banker is just looking to get rid of yet another mortgage loan that has gone bad. Unlike a normal seller, they aren’t in a big hurry to sell, and they really don’t care about your particular buying situation. What the bank most desires is to see a bidding war break out among buyers who, in their frenzy, bid the price up to what is no longer a really great deal.

Foreclosure Tip: Be as detached as the bank when approaching foreclosures, so you do not fall into the bidding war trap.

We talked to Andy Skillen at Atlanta Intown Real Estate Services for some tips on how to win at foreclosures.

“I recently spoke with a buyer who had bid on four different foreclosed properties, and lost every time,” said Andy Skillen. “Here are some tips on how you can more effectively win at the foreclosure game:”

1) If you have an IRA or other investment that is equal to or greater than the purchase price of the property, submit a statement as proof of funds; even if you are getting a loan. Make sure you are comfortable with not having a financing contingency.

2) Make sure the seller knows that you are going to owner occupy the property. An investor who is getting a loan will almost never win in a bidding war.

3) Forget about offering the list price. Offer a price that will make you comfortable, even if you don’t get it. Offering up to what you qualify for, and paying a bit over list, but getting that property for $100K less than equivalent properties, still puts you $100K (or more) ahead of everybody else.

4) The more simple the contract the more likely you are to win.


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