Buying A Foreclosure: 5 Colossal Concepts

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Buying a foreclosure can be downright difficult. Many first-timers use websites to try and find a home for a real estate investment. A very popular housing website is Zillow. Scrolling around on Zillow looking for a type of house could be tedious. In this article, we talk about Zillow and the different listing types: pre-foreclosure, foreclosure, and foreclosed properties.

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Pre-Foreclosure Insights

When buying a foreclosure, you can’t simply look for the phrase “foreclosure” or “foreclosures near me”. On Zillow, pre-foreclosure means that the person has defaulted on their loan. So, they are served notices regularly. This notice goes on until it goes into foreclosure. When a property is in pre-foreclosure, all you have to do is wait.

buying a foreclosure wait

As a professional, there is nothing you can do than to wait and watch it go into foreclosure. Foreclosure is the only way you can purchase that property. It takes a long time from which a property can go from pre-foreclosed to foreclosed. The period is 120-180 days. During the pre-foreclosure, the homeowner has the right to try to agree with the lender.

We All Need Redemption

buying a foreclosure redemption

If you are looking at buying a foreclosure, watch the foreclosure information notes. You would see a lot of data when you’re at the top of the information note. It gives a foreclosure estimate (it is Zestimate in Zillow). It doesn’t provide the actual sales price. Do not expect to see an MLS number.

As we said earlier, pre-foreclosed to foreclosed takes 120-180 days. The reason that there’s that 180-day period is for the previous owner. This period gives the individual time to buy back the property. In real estate, these 180 days are known as the redemption period. Knowing about this period allows you to get better at buying a foreclosure property.

Trends in Foreclosure

buying a foreclosure
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On Zillow, clicking for sale and foreclosure at the same time would yield a different result. You would get a foreclosure price which Zillow says it’s an estimate. The real price is unknown. You would get an MLS number, which starts with “145”. You would need a licensed real estate agent to check out Zillow‘s foreclosure houses. Get a real estate agent if you want to be connected to the MLS. You get to know the latest trends in the foreclosure market.

Power of Zillow: Buying a Foreclosure Property

At times, Zillow will post things that are incorrect or outdated. You will need a backdoor to the MLS. A real estate agent can provide that for you. With the Zillow client portal, you get notified when something new comes up in your market.

You can get a full-listed foreclosed property on Zillow. This type of property means that the property is bank-owned. Bank-owned means that they have gone through the foreclosure process. The bank has taken it, and they’re trying to sell it to get the profit. You get to see how it went down. From loan issues, home defaulted on, foreclosure, then bank-listed.

Watch for Red Flags

buying a foreclosure red flag

You could see a red flag situation on Zillow in a redemption time situation. A case where a bank relists a property for sale without it going through the redemption time. Be careful with these red flag properties. The reason is if you make an offer, you could wait in line then get rejected. This rejection is possible because the bank does not have the full title to the property. Said differently, the original homeowner would still have the right to purchase the property.

Another red flag about foreclosure is incorrect filing. You would make an offer and get it into escrow. Only to find out that the bank doesn’t own the property yet. So, your agent will have to make sure that the bank’s name is on the preliminary title report. Do not make an offer if it has the previous owner’s name on the title.


If it is listed as an MLS number, it is up for sale. There could be multiple offers. Zillow wouldn’t tell you if there are various offers. This is one more reason to consult your real estate agent to verify this situation. Zillow‘s pre-foreclosure, foreclosure, and foreclosed properties can be significant profit property types for you. Be smart and leverage the information Zillow provides and you will become a master at buying a foreclosure property.

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