Questions to Ask before Buying a Foreclosure in Portland!

You know that whole saying, “If it seems too good to be true than it probably is.”  Well that is definitely applicable to foreclosures, particularly ones that have been abandoned.  I often encounter new buyers who are excited about the prospect of buying a foreclosure because of the great price they may get.   And I usually end up deflating their excitement by explaining why they are so cheap and all the maintenance issues they may have as a result.  Usually if that doesn’t make the buyer skittish, looking at a few foreclosures in Portland will.

In very rare instances, there are buyers who are experienced with making repairs and fully understand what will have to be done if they buy a foreclosure and therefore they still would like to proceed with buying one.

So just in case you don’t know much about foreclosures, never have bought a house or just are wondering; here’s a list of some questions to ask before you make your offer.

1. How long has the home been vacant? Be cautious of a foreclosed home that has stood vacant for more than a few weeks or had its utilities shut off a long time.  A home can deteriorate quickly when heating, cooling, electricity, and running water have been turned off for awhile.

2. How old is the home?  Older homes may have failing plumbing issues or inadequate electrical wiring.

3. How does the home look? Are there broken windows, gutters hanging down, or damaged siding? A poor exterior doesn’t always mean a poor interior but think of it as a red flag and make sure to have a thorough inspection no matter what the home looks like.

4. Is there anything missing? Sometimes former owners remove anything of value from the home, such as built-in light fixtures, bathroom tile, water heaters, air-conditioning units, and hardwoods.  Make sure to add that to the list of things you will need to replace should you purchase the home.

Housing experts encourage buyers to get a home inspector to look at the property, even if it is sold as-is, so that home buyers know any repairs needed and cost estimates before they purchase the home.

“Buying a bank-owned home gives you the opportunity to enter the market at a very low price level,” says Dorcas Helfant, a past president of the National Association of REALTORS®. “You can find terrific values among foreclosures, especially if they’re not in too bad shape. But, remember, these houses are discounted for a reason.”

by Betsy Ballantyne (some info provided by

You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Leave a Reply