in this lovely Buckhead home – double drawer dishwasher, beautiful electric range with a glass top, side-by-side fridge, dishwasher. This home has a full-sized laundry room plus lots of storage. You won’t believe the bedroom closet on this one – it’s huge! Granite counters in the spacious bathroom, plus additional storage in the linen closet. Carrington Park has a gated community with a gym and sunny pool. Unbeatable Buckhead location!
Most Americans have seen ads on television for get-rich quick seminars that teach novice investors the secrets of making money from housing foreclosure sales. In spite of all the hype, successfully buying and selling foreclosed real estate requires research, money, knowledge, experience and time. Furthermore, buying foreclosed real estate is not without risk. If you plan to try your hand at this type of investing, you need to be well-versed in foreclosure basics.
Foreclosure is the legal recourse lenders or governmental agencies have to recoup money owed them because a property owner failed to make payments. The lender/agency can take the house and sell it to satisfy the debt. Generally, the reasons for foreclosure include:
- Non-payment of a mortgage/home equity loan.
- Inability to meet a balloon payment.
- Failure to pay property taxes.
- Inadequate insurance coverage for the property.
- Inability/failure to maintain the property.
The foreclosure process involves three stages:
Pre-foreclosure – This is the period between the time the homeowner stops making payments and when the land is put up for sale at auction. Investors typically deal with the homeowner during this time.
Auction – This is when the property is taken from the homeowner and sold to the highest bidder. Either the county sheriff or a trustee handles this phase, depending on the state.
Real estate owned (REO) – If no one buys the property at auction or if the lender is the highest bidder, the home becomes “real estate owned” by the bank. Banks usually sell REO properties on the open market through a real estate agent or third-party marketing company. The most common method of buying a foreclosed property is during a sheriff’s auction or trustee’s sale. These auctions are held on a weekday morning. Investors cannot pay with credit cards, personal checks or IOUs, and they must make a sizable deposit or pay the entire sum for the property on the spot. Typically, potential buyers are not allowed inside the house before bidding begins. The only information prospective buyers have on which to base a purchase decision is what is available through public records searches and a curbside appraisal.
A second risk in sheriff’s auctions and trustee’s sales is that the homes are not guaranteed to come with a clear title. This makes the title search a critical, necessary part of your public records research. If a previous owner with a valid claim surfaces later, you can lose everything you invested.
Also, homes sold at auction sometimes have liens that weren’t erased by foreclosure, such as an IRS debt, that could wipe out any profit you thought you would see from the resale of the property.
Procedural errors and court rulings also could stop a foreclosure sale after you have invested time and money. Furthermore, some states have a statutory redemption period, during which time the
original homeowner can repay what is owed, regain ownership and leave you with nothing. Despite all of these potential drawbacks, buying an auctioned home isn’t always a perilous
undertaking. Homes foreclosed by reputable lenders who are the first lien holders can be a fairly safe investment. If the deal is completed properly, and you have title insurance, there’s an excellent
chance of getting a good title. Properties foreclosed by a government agency, such as the Department of Housing and Urban Development or the Veterans Administration, present less risk.
These auctions are conducted online through a marketing company. Buyers are permitted to examine the homes in advance, conduct inspections and obtain title insurance. The biggest drawback to government auctions is the limited availability of homes. Consequently, available properties attract many interested buyers, which makes it a very competitive market with prices only slightly discounted off current market value. If you are considering the idea of investing in real estate through buying foreclosed properties, prepare yourself by learning the ins and outs of the process and legal issues, and gathering whatever information you can on the property and parties involved. In doing so, you’ll help to minimize the risk that is inherent with this type of investment.
Information Courtesy of Snellings Walters Insurance
Snellings Walters Insurance
Here’s what you need to know:
- The county tax assessor states a property value on which they will calculate the property tax for the calendar year in the Notice of Assessment.
- The Notice of Assessment is sent to the owner of record as of January 1 in that tax year.
- If the property has been sold, either the seller who owned the property as of January or the buyer who currently owns the property may appeal.
- You do not have to wait to receive the mailed Notice of Assessment – you can look it up at the county tax assessors web site (see links below).
- No taxes are due at this time, 2018 tax bills will be sent out later this year but your time to object to the value is now – you cannot wait until the bill comes out!
- All appeals must be filed within 45 days from the date of the Notice of Assessment.
- If a home’s FMV is higher than expected, we encourage the owner of record to consider an appeal.
- The assessment notice provides specific instructions on what you must do to appeal.
- Owners may represent themselves or hire someone to represent them.
|The Atlanta REALTORS® (ARA), the largest association of its kind in Georgia, released its April 2018 Market Brief on residential housing statistics in metro-Atlanta. The Market Brief, compiled by First Multiple Listing Service (FMLS), provides the only regionally focused synopsis of monthly sales and home prices for single family residential properties. This summary covers 11 counties: Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, DeKalb, Douglas, Fayette, Forsyth, Fulton, Gwinnett, Paulding and Rockdale.
Demand: May residential sales were at 5,838, a decrease of 4.7% from the previous year.
Price: Average and median sales prices continue to gain traction and outpace 2017’s figures, with positive gains. The median sales price in May was $282,000, an increase of 9.7% from last May. The average sales price was $344,000, up 7.5% from the previous year.
Supply: Atlanta area housing inventory totaled 13,156 units in May, a decrease of 10.2% from May, 2017. New listings totaled 5,202, down 6.6% from May, 2017 and up 5.6% from the previous month. The month’s supply over a 12-month period increased to 2.7 months.
A Word from 2018 Atlanta REALTORS® President Bill Murray: “The economy is very healthy and job growth is holding strong, keeping the demand for homes robust. However, the Atlanta market needs more new and existing homes available for sale to allow home prices to moderate enough for potential home owners to continue to have choices available.”
The data in this report was compiled by First Multiple Listing Service (FMLS). For more information on details of this month’s report, please contact the Association at 404.250.0051.
*Each month, the numbers reported for the previous month are updated to reflect additional recordings.
Georgia law permits a person who has supplied goods and/or labor to the improvement of real property the right to place a lien on said property if the work has not been paid for within 3 months after the date of completion of the work. After that time, the lien shall be valid for 365 days from the date of filing the claim of lien to file Notice of Suit. The lien shall be disregarded after 395 days from the filing of the lien if no Notice of Suit has been filed.
This is a concern for anyone improving or constructing a home, because the law allows subcontractors to file such liens as well.
A good way to prevent these types of liens from being filed upon property that you are working with is to obtain “lien waivers” from the contractors and subcontractors working on the property.
An “Interim Lien Waiver and Release upon Payment” can be used when there is a payment being made but the final work has not yet been completed.
An “Unconditional Waiver and Release Upon Final Payment” can be used when the final work has been completed.