Got a great car for you...

By
Real Estate Agent with Goedert Real Estate

2 years ago it ran like a dream, sure it's been up on blocks ever since, but I'm gonna give you a deal.   That odd smell is normal for something that has been empty so long, just open the windows.   You can have your mechanic take a look under the hood, we'll even put some gas in to get it started, we drained the tank for safety.  Not to worry, I don't think you can be held legally responsible for anything the prior owner may have done to the vehicle that doesn't pass acceptable standards, or anything they left under the seats or stuffed into the cushions.  Some animals did get in through a broken window and may have done damage, but as you can see its duct taped up now and good to go.  Yes, possibly they might have replaced certain engine parts without any knowledge of car repair, but that stuff happens, did we mention this sale is "AS IS"?  No, we have no records to offer you of upkeep, care, or major past problems, but take a look at that price!   Just sign each of these 30 pages saying I am not responsible for anything and the keys are yours.  

Would you be thrilled to be the buyer?  Yet that is what we see happening with foreclosures, they cost less, so they are snatched up, leaving so many "seller" owned homes behind. Sitting on the market are homes that are being cared for, maintained, with owners that have records of what had been done to the home, any problems and their solutions.   "Real" Sellers are often happy to have the new homeowners call them if any questions come up after closing on how to take care of odds and ends, they are excited to be passing on a home they loved to new owners.  With foreclosures there is no one to call, no joyful passing of the keys, usually not even an agent from the listing office appears.

Think about whether a few thousand dollars is worth the difference between a currently maintained, cared for home with a complete history compared to an empty, unkempt home that has often set vacant for long periods of time during the foreclosure period, some that are purposely damaged by the former owners in ways that may or may not be easily apparent. We all know that when anything falls into disuse, there is deterioration and decay.  Some of it will show up during inspections, some of it will show up down the road.  I know of homeowners that have let homes go into foreclosure after finding too many costly repairs are needed.  With little invested to begin with, its just easier to give it back to the bank, but no disclosure will be available to the new buyer about the problems. 

Buyers need to look at the whole picture, what are you saving and what are you risking when you take a chance on that abandoned home?  Think about that car on blocks, you would know enough to wonder about its potential for problems compared to the car that is on the road and in smooth running condition.   A home is a much larger investment than a car, don't tell your agent you only want to see the repos without giving the others a chance, you will be surprised by the difference when you actually visit a home that is currently loved.

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Show All Comments
Rainmaker
1,065,953
Joan Whitebook
BHG The Masiello Group - Nashua, NH
Consumer Focused Real Estate Services

Beth -- I am glad that you wrote this post.  I am concerned that some buyers don't have a clue what they are getting into.  The foreclosures are not for everyone --

Jul 22, 2008 02:57 PM #1
Rainer
150,001
R. B. "Bob" Mitchell - Loan Officer Raleigh/Durham
Bank of England (NMLS#418481) - Raleigh, NC
Bob Mitchell (NMLS#1046286)

Interesting take on the current situation!  Having just taken my daughter to the car auction to buy a vehicle, it seems like there is a lot in common with buying a foreclosure.....hmmm, think that I just came up with my next post!  Thanks!!! ;-)

 

Bob Mitchell

ValueList Real Estate Services, Inc.

Jul 22, 2008 03:01 PM #2
Rainer
122,061
Jim Albano
Prudential Damiano Realty - Little Falls, NJ
Team - Jean-Marie Vantuno / Realtors North Jersey Real Estate

Great analogy. At first I was thinking you were nuts for buying this car! You made your point though - most of these foreclosure "bargains" are not for those inexperienced at home repair. Great post!

Jul 22, 2008 03:01 PM #3
Rainer
20,928
Beth Anderson
Goedert Real Estate - Tecumseh, MI
Realtor - Tecumseh / Lenawee County

Joan~ We all know that there are some deals that come along that can be great for the buyer, but I see so many homes that just look like problems waiting to happen and the buyers are so focused on the cost of buying, not of repairing and maintaining.

Jul 22, 2008 03:08 PM #4
Rainer
20,928
Beth Anderson
Goedert Real Estate - Tecumseh, MI
Realtor - Tecumseh / Lenawee County

Bob~ My car has been making strange sounds of late, I will hang on to the bitter end before I buy another, I love my little car.

Jul 22, 2008 03:22 PM #5
Rainer
20,928
Beth Anderson
Goedert Real Estate - Tecumseh, MI
Realtor - Tecumseh / Lenawee County

Jim~ Glad you decided I was sane after all :)  Thanks for the nice comment.

Jul 22, 2008 03:27 PM #6
Rainmaker
1,030,664
Sharon Tara
Sharon Tara Transformations - Portsmouth, NH
New Hampshire Home Stager

Very good analogy, Beth.  Very well written too!  It is scary what people are buying thinking they are getting a deal.  You really need to know what you are doing if you are considering one of these "deals" and you need to be very handy.

Jul 22, 2008 06:29 PM #7
Rainer
20,928
Beth Anderson
Goedert Real Estate - Tecumseh, MI
Realtor - Tecumseh / Lenawee County

Sharon~ Thanks for the compliment!  I show so many of these lately and many of them are really a mess.  I am not handy, my X could fix anything and with him I once did buy a fixer-upper, our first home, but on my own I just can't imagine the costs that could add up.

Jul 23, 2008 09:47 AM #8
Rainer
20,928
Beth Anderson
Goedert Real Estate - Tecumseh, MI
Realtor - Tecumseh / Lenawee County

Today I showed three homes, and for once none of them were in foreclosure.  What a pleasure, the grass was green, landscaping pretty and lush, air conditioning on and the buyers could even use the powder room if the need arose.  I hate to say how often I am out and showing nothing but foreclosures, the difference is huge. 

Jul 24, 2008 07:32 PM #9
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Rainer
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Beth Anderson

Realtor - Tecumseh / Lenawee County
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