Boston Foreclosures for Sale
One way to save big when buying a home or investment property is by purchasing a foreclosed home. If you are in the market for a Boston foreclosure, Boston City Properties has you covered. We maintain a huge database of up-to-the-minute real estate listings, including listings for foreclosures throughout the city and metro area. As an added bonus, we have experienced agents who can advise you and assist you in procuring the perfect foreclosed home. Whether you are looking for a condo, a single-family home or another type of foreclosed property, you can't beat Boston City Properties.
Click on the button above to search up-to-the-minute listings in the Boston area. Also, leave us a note in the "Notes Section" with any questions you may have. This MLS system will often have 100's of up-to-the-minute banked owned properties for sale in Mass. E-mail us or call us anytime with any questions, and to set up to view the short-sales & REO's. This system will include up-to-the-minute property listings from the largest real estate agencies in the Boston area. Also, check out our foreclosures by neighborhood page for general information by city/neighborhood and click the link to search up to the minute properties.
Buying Boston Foreclosures
The main advantage of buying a Boston foreclosure is it can save you a lot of money. The process can be complicated, however, depending on the circumstances. It's crucial to arm yourself with accurate and timely information from square one, and you can do that with Boston City Properties' listings. Foreclosures typically go up for auction. If you go that route, you'll most likely need cash. Bank- and real estate-owned foreclosures are available, and they tend to be the most popular among people looking for homes. Investors can score big too, so if you need an investment property, Boston foreclosures should be right up your alley.
Find foreclosed properties with Boston City Properties
You can get a lot of bang for your buck by purchasing a foreclosed property. Foreclosures can be found in every neighborhood in the city and in many outlying suburbs too. There are also short sales, bank-owned properties and many other money-saving options out there. Wading through them all is tricky, so do yourself a favor and sign up for free access to Boston City Properties' listings. We can also connect you with agents and brokers who can assist you in your search. Contact Boston City Properties today.
Foreclosure is never a word any homeowners want to hear. When a house has had a foreclosure notice, it means that the owner was unable to make the scheduled mortgage payments and is seriously delinquent on their home loan. This is a severe financial situation for someone who has a home because it means that they are in danger of losing it.
What happens in a foreclosure in Boston?
The manner in which a foreclosure happens depends, to some degree on the location. In Boston, a foreclosure is handled in a certain order with the normal steps listed below.
- Notice of Default - The first step in the process is a Notice of Default that is filed by the mortgage or lending company. This notice is mailed 30 days after the fourth consecutive missed payment on a mortgage or home loan.
- Reinstatement of loan - If a homeowner can afford to make payments to catch up the loan, Massachusetts law allows the owner up to three months in general to reinstate the loan. Once the loan is officially reinstated, the notice will likely be retracted, and the homeowner will be caught up. If they cannot afford to pay it, the foreclosure may go through.
- Resale - Once your home has been served with a foreclosure notice, you will have around 30 days to vacate the house. Then the bank will likely put the house up for sale in a quick sale often known as a "fire sale." Alternately, they can sell shares of the home to real estate investors who will each get a portion of the sale once the property is resold.
In most cases, once a foreclosure notice has been served, and the owner cannot catch up on the house payments, the bank that loaned the money will have a quick sale to sell the home. The price of such sales will often be much lower than market value because the banks are not in the real estate business and they want to make money as quickly as possible on the foreclosed property. They cannot afford to wait very long to get some of their money back, either. They view it much like a credit card company whose cardholder has defaulted on their credit line. They believe that some is better than none when getting their money back out of the lost credit extension.
How you can benefit from a foreclosure
If you are looking to purchase a home in Boston and you decide to purchase a foreclosed home, you may save a lot of money on the purchase. That's because, as stated above, the asking price of a foreclosed home is substantially lower than the average sale of a regular home transaction. So, the buyer who is looking to purchase from a previously owned home that has been closed out, you may save a great deal of money. Check with your local real estate agent or look in the local real estate publications to check for foreclosed homes in Boston. Our site can help you with this also!
Mortgage vs. Deed of Trust
There are two ways to purchase a home: mortgage or deed of trust. Depending on the laws in your area, you may have purchased your home with a mortgage or a deed-of-trust. A mortgage is easier to close out a home if the homeowner cannot make the payments than with a deed of trust. A deed of trust allows the lender to avoid going normal court procedures to collect or create a contract with the buyer. With a mortgage, it involves more legal paperwork processes and must go to a court to foreclose on the borrower.
As a borrower, you are better off going through a mortgage since there will be a paper trail and court documents that require a particular specific procedure for these types of transactions. In other words, no one can close your house deal quickly, and they must give you due process if you are having trouble making payments. As a lender, you are safer with a deed of trust, since it is more of a gentleman's agreement on paper that does not require court proceedings to foreclose if the buyer or borrower cannot make the payments.
The Hazards of Foreclosed Homes
You may not have thought about this, but a home that has been served with a foreclosure notice may pose a hazard and a public threat. There are some reasons for this.
- Vandalism threat - One threat posed by a home that has been foreclosed on is the threat of vandalism. A home that is empty and is known to be empty may be susceptible to vandals and criminals who do not have respect for the vacated property. This can lead to insurmountable damage to the home or surrounding area and pose an extra security threat to neighbors.
- Unkempt walkways and yards - If a house is left to sit too long by itself and is unoccupied, it will not be tended to, leaving grass and shrubbery to be overgrown and creating an unattractive yard and walkway. This lowers the value of the property and causes the entire neighborhood to lose value by the average real estate investor or buyer.
- Animals or pests - Another potential problem with unoccupied properties are animals, insects, and various other pests that are on the property. This can include raccoons, snakes, mosquitoes, ticks, and many other insects or rodents. Some of these can carry disease, as well, increasing the public health concerns.
- Unsecured swimming pools - Houses with swimming pools that are unoccupied and untended may pose a health risk and a legal threat. If you own the home that is vacated, you could have a liability if someone was to hurt themselves on your property. This includes pools that are not tended to and any other potential hazards. Putting up a sign that says "no swimming" may offer you some legal protection but it may not be enough if you were negligent and the property is still in your name. If you are a bank that retook ownership of the house after a foreclosure, you may still have some legal responsibility until the home is sold to a buyer.
- Unlocked houses - Unlocked houses, open doors, garages, and storage buildings are all invitations to theft and destruction of property. This is why it is important for a home to be sold quickly once it has been served with a foreclosure notice.
The City of Boston Regarding Foreclosure Laws
Boston has an increasing concern for unoccupied and vacated properties that were lost in a foreclosure. The law becomes difficult to comprehend at times because it is sometimes difficult to determine who is legally responsible for taking care of the upkeep of the property. The Boston ordinance that addresses this requires all residential property owners (including trustees, lenders, and service companies to register and maintain their property, even if it is vacated later). This means that you are still responsible for maintaining health and sanitation codes, all building codes and city ordinances, and other local zoning regulations of both the external or visible exterior and interior maintenance.
What this means to a homeowner or banker
What this means to a homeowner or banker is, regardless of the fact that the home may have been taken back by the bank, both the homeowner and the banker who retracted the home may share some joint responsibility for taking care of the home to avoid serious infractions of the law, zoning ordinances, health and safety standards, and other situations.
The homeowner, as they are moving out of the location, may have a legal duty to continue to keep up the home to certain standards until such time that the home can be prepared to be presented as a "resale." This means that homeowners should make sure they have someone in place to care for the upkeep and maintenance of their home until they have no more responsibility for its condition. This would be when the home is placed with a real estate agency or Boston properties management company for sale by the bank.
How to use foreclosures to your advantage
To the homeowner who has had their home foreclosed upon, it is not a happy matter. The former owners will be faced with having to relocate to another location and give up their home to someone else. However, it offers a great opportunity to people who can afford to purchase the home at a reduced price.
If you are a buyer looking for a great deal on a home in Boston, you may be able to save a great deal of money by looking for these properties.
If you are just starting to search for properties that are available due to a foreclosure, you will want to look for "lender-owned properties." Lender-owned properties are properties that have been reclaimed by the bank, lending institution, or other real estate agency that has a legal claim on the home. This is what you will want to look for when you are looking to cash in on the savings from a foreclosure. Lender-owned properties mean that you will have to deal with the lender directly and that you will not deal with the homeowner directly, even if they previously owned the home.
It's important to know who you are dealing with when it comes to finding properties that are on the market from these types of situations. Dealing with the previous homeowner will do you no good if the homeowner no longer has control over the sale or the paperwork that is required to close the deal. Dealing with the lender is required only when the foreclosure is final since they would be the legal owner of the property at that point.
Short sales are popular ways that you can find a property in Boston at a reduced price. A short sale often occurs with little warning, though you may be able to spot these kinds of deals in the paper in the real estate section or other places.
Look for sales that are labeled "short sales" or "fire sales." These are homes that are put up for sale by the lender or mortgage company that has reclaimed the house for non-payment and want to see a profit from the property as soon as possible.
Advantages of a Short Sale Home Purchase
If you purchase a home from a short sale, there are some distinct advantages. Some of the most common advantages are mentioned below.
- Lower price than normal home purchases - One of the best advantages to finding a home through a short sale is that you are likely to get a home at a much lower price than you normally would. Since the lender has reclaimed a property, they are going to be in a much greater hurry to make their money back from the loss (since the original buyer could no longer pay), so they are often ready to make you a much better deal than a normal home listing that goes through a real estate company.
- Ability to negotiate lower rates - In addition to the already low price that you will probably see from the fire sale, you may also have more negotiating power with a fire sale than with a normal home sale. So, in addition to your lower cost, you'll get, you may be able to get the lender to come down even more given the right terms. This includes the ability to get the interest rate down which can produce substantial savings for you over the long term due to the amount of a home purchase.
- Paperwork closure faster and more final - One of the hassles you often will experience in the normal home purchasing process is the long wait for the paperwork to come through. Not so with a short sale. Eager to close the deal, the lender will often offer you terms as good as an in-store purchase that can be closed quickly and easily right then and there. Use this to your advantage by settling on terms they are willing to live with while considering what you want to get most out of the arrangement.
- No middle man - Another advantage to dealing with a lender in a fire sale is the fact that there is no middleman such as a real estate company (unless the real estate company is holding the sale). When you deal with the bank or mortgage company directly, you can there are no percentages or commissions going to sales or real estate agent, keeping the cost low.
- Great real estate investment opportunity - If you are a real estate investor or you want to break into the real estate business, a short sale may be a way to do this with a minimal investment. We explain real estate investment opportunities later in the article. But suffice it to say that this is a great opportunity to save money on your investment. Then you can either live in the property yourself or rent it out for a monthly premium to start seeing a return on your investment.
How to Find Boston Homes with Foreclosures
If you have decided to try to save some money by locating short sales of foreclosed homes in the Boston area, congratulations! Your decision to purchase a foreclosed home frees the owner and the lender from the added financial obligation, as well as the risk to the neighborhood and community if the house if vacated for too long.
You can often find a high-quality home at a greatly reduced price through short sales and foreclosures.
The key to getting a good deal is just to follow a few precautions and to be a critical buyer. Some things you'll want to keep in mind when looking to buy such as home are:
- Condition of the home
- Price range
- Background story
- Previous owners
- Terms and conditions
- Legal status
Location is still one of the most important things to consider when it comes to buying or selling real estate. Remember the old saying, "Location, location, location?" This is still true today. Think about it. Even if you find a great sales price on a home, you won't want to move into it if it is in a section of town that you don't like, too far to drive to work each day, or other factors. So check out the location first before committing to purchasing a foreclosed home.
Condition of Home
The condition is the most important factor when you are searching for a home, no matter what the circumstances. Why is this true? For one thing, if you purchase a home that has major repairs that must be done, you can be out much more money than the purchase price in repairs and materials.
In addition to the materials, you will have to hire a contractor or builders and carpenters to come in and do the work. This can cost extra money above and beyond the purchase and materials for fixing up the home.
Many people prefer to buy a "fixer-upper," but this can cost a lot of extra money if you are not careful. Think carefully before purchasing a home in need of repairs. You need to consider whether it is worth the extra cost of buying materials and hiring contractors to fix up the house to your standards or if it better to look elsewhere.
Tips on Purchasing a Home with Repair Needs
Here are some ideas when you are considering purchasing a home that needs work:
- Consider the scope of the work, how long it will take, and what the final result will be.
- Check around and compare contractor prices to see how much it will cost and what the cheapest method will be to put it together.
- Survey any major damage to the foundation or structure and get a price estimate on the cost of the repairs.
- Check the cost of materials before committing.
- Calculate the total estimated cost of materials and repairs and add it to the total final value price of the home. That will be your total investment.
When considering a foreclosed home, think about the price range that you are willing to pay and what you can afford. Remember that you may be able to have more leeway when it comes to negotiating a deal with a home foreclosure than you will with other types of real estate investments. Use this to your advantage by talking to the lender or the bank handling the property and see if you can negotiate price. Don't forget to see if you can negotiate the interest rate, as well as the overall sales price. Remember that you are at a distinct advantage with a foreclosed property since the lender wants to sell fast and may be willing to come down on the price more in these types of situations.
Know the background story
Here is one part of the home purchasing process that many people forget. It is important, and you should remember the importance of it when looking for a home. Know the background of the home. To get the full story of this type of home, you may need to talk to the original homeowner if you can find out who this is, as well as the lender or bank that owns the home now. The owner usually knows more about the problems that the home had than the banker who took possession of it. So it is to your advantage to find out from the homeowner what the problems were.
If you do not find out the background of the home, you may inherit problems you didn't know it had, leaving you to pay a stiff bill for repairs later on that you hadn't counted on in the sales price. Be sure to follow our formula and calculate the total costs of the repairs as well as the sales price and any other expenses. Do not make the mistake of only figuring the sales price when considering whether the cost is right for you.
It's a good idea to have a "highest price" that you are willing to pay for a home and not to go above this. This should correspond to your budget as you have allocated the amount of money that you can afford to spend on basic expenses and home costs.
Remember, that if you do not follow this rule, you may end up in the same situation that the owners of the home did when they had to foreclose on their home. So do your homework on cost ahead of time before you sign on the bottom line.
When searching for a home, whether it be through normal channels or with a short sale, make sure that you investigate the previous owners as well as the background of the home. Knowing whether the previous homeowners were people who took care to take responsibility for the home's maintenance or not is important, as well as the overall condition that they left the house in when they left.
Find out the health of the "guts" of the home such as the heating unit, air conditioning system, insulation, foundation, and outside fixtures. Look at the lawn and garage area or carport, as well to get an idea of how well they took care of the grounds.
Terms and Conditions
Once you find a house that you like and are ready to make a deal on the property, read over the legal terms and conditions carefully. Remember, once you sign a contract, you are legally bound to follow it. Make sure you can agree to the monthly payment terms, outright sale price if you are buying it in cash, and any other circumstances or clauses. If you need time to go over your contract, ask for 24 hours to consult with your lawyer and read over the contract before you sign it.
Find out the legal status of a home that has been foreclosed before signing the paperwork. You don't want to find a home that you love than to discover that it is still tied up in court for one reason or another. Ask the lender as well as the homeowner (if available) to state to you what the situation is regarding any strings attached to the home. The home will be listed as a foreclosure home in your county and region once a local court determines this and it should be a matter of public record. An easy check with your local county extension agency or a real estate search will often turn up the results you need. Do your homework to make sure that you are getting what you think you are getting when you are considering a home purchase.
The Foreclosure Market in Boston
If you are wondering what kind of market you might find in the Boston area, the housing market is rich with opportunities in the Boston area. Due to a large number of foreclosed homes in the Boston area, you have plenty of opportunities to find a home through a foreclosure or short sale by a bank or mortgage company.
Some of the homes that have been foreclosed on in Boston can be found by searching for Boston foreclosures on our website. We have been helping people in the Boston area find Boston properties for years including houses in various locations in the Boston area. Some of the areas we serve include the following:
Boston, MA (All), Allston, Bay Village, Charlestown, East Boston, Everett, Leather District, Mattapan, West End, West Roxbury, Weston, and Winthrop.
If you are looking to locate in any of these areas or many others in Boston, we can help. Just use our search page to search your property area, and we will show you the results you need to get started.
You can search by location, the number of bedrooms, and type of living unit you want. By filling in these factors before you do your search, you will be able to narrow down your options and locate a property that fits your needs much faster than doing it on your own.
Our predesigned template allows you to find what you are looking for so that you can see if you want to pursue certain deals before committing to the purchase.
Using the tools available to you on our site and with your searches will allow you to go into a real estate deal equipped with the knowledge that you need to find the best deal in a foreclosure arrangement.
There are many different Boston properties available that fall under the status of "foreclosure homes." It just takes a little research on your part to determine the condition of your home, the costs to you once you purchase it, and the amount of work that must be done to maintain the standards your local ordinance requires you to comply.
Go through our list of other factors again or as you need to do to make sure you are following the regulations and considering the important aspects of purchasing a home when you are looking to buy a home in Boston.
How to Decide on a Purchase
We've discussed many of the factors that you should consider when purchasing a home. From the purchase price to fix-up costs, interest percentages, and location, all of these factors are important when you are considering a home purchase.
How to Win a Home Auction
Some short sales are done directly with the banker or lending institution that owns the property after it is taken from the owner in a foreclosure. Others go to auction. Bankers who own properties and have been unsuccessful in selling such property may list it again as a quick auction. Once you locate a short sale that you are interested in, remember that you should be prepared to know the cost you're willing to settle for before you go. Do your research ahead of time to learn all you can about the property you are interested in so that you will be ready to make a decision quickly.
The reason for this is that some short sales are done as an auction that requires you to act fast when you see a home you want to buy. There are sometimes things you can do to keep the home from being listed in an auction and keep negotiating with the bank instead. You need to know whether your home is going to be listed as an auction or not before you plan whether you want to purchase it.
Remember that you do not want to bid on a home if you are not convinced you want to purchase it. This is why it is no important to do your homework ahead of time through research, including the tools on our site before you decide to buy. Going through this process ahead of time will help you to make up your mind regarding a home purchase before you attend the auction.
Using Technology to Find your Dream Home
A long time ago, before the Internet, it was difficult to figure out which homes would be right for you. You had to do a lot of checking with various banks, real estate agencies, and homeowners before you were able to ascertain whether a home was right for you. Now, with internal search engines such as the one you'll find right here on our site, you will be able to save legwork, time, and money by doing your research right on site.
Try our internal home search engine to see what you can find. This gives you a starting point. Then you can research prospective properties further by arranging to talk to the lender or banker who owns the property. By negotiating a deal with the banker directly, you will maintain more control over the deal than if you wait until the house goes to auction. Keeping it out of auction is a good strategy if you want to be able to control the outcome of the cost by dealing directly with the owner.
Visit the neighborhood
One of the best bits of advice we can give when you are looking for a house is to visit the neighborhood where you intend on buying a home. Walk down the sidewalk and look around. Get a feel for the surroundings. Ask a few people around the area if they feel secure and get a feel for the sense of security.
Safety is important so you may want to check the history of an area and look to see if they have street lights in open sight where you will be able to know that you are safe if you decide to move to the area.
Secondly, find out what types of amenities are within walking and driving distance of the location. Are there schools and places of business, restaurants, and shopping areas that are close to the location? If these things are important to you, then you will want to make sure you get a property that is located within proximity to these things.
Finally, locate the contact information of the listing if it is listed by a bank or lending institution. Once you have this information, you will be able to control much of the potential transaction by contacting the current owner to ask for more details. If a real estate agent is handling the property even after a foreclosure, then you will need to deal with a real estate agent rather than try to deal with the owner directly.
Ask for an opinion before buying
Since you are dealing with a fast sale arrangement or auction with foreclosure properties, there is a bit more of a risk that you may get a property that is not what you expect. So just do your due diligence before shopping to avoid any problems with your purchase.
One way you can do this is by getting a second opinion on the property from a real estate or property expert. You may also want to get the house appraised when possible by a home appraiser. This is valuable to you as a home buyer because you will be able to know precisely what your home is worth by having it professionally appraised.
Second opinions may also come from a good friend who knows the housing industry or a real estate investor who wants to help you get a good deal. Make sure the opinions you ask for are based on the value of the home (knowing what the home is worth) as well as forming estimations of the long-term value of the house as well.
Real Estate Investing
We said we'd tell you a bit more about real estate investing in this article so here it is. Though we speak mostly to people who are looking to purchase a home for themselves, we know that some of our readers may be looking to break into the real estate investment business, as well. If this sounds like you, you will want to read this section.
Real estate investment is one of the best ways to increase your long-term wealth and assets. In fact, it is named by many well-known financial publications as the single best way to increase your net worth. However, this is only true if you make smart real estate investments. So think carefully and look into the details of a property as we've advised you to do in this article before deciding.
The great thing about purchasing short sales from foreclosure home deals is the fact that you can get a home for wholesale price or at least for a lot less than you would be able to do in a normal home purchasing deal.
In other words, if you are looking to break into the real estate business at a much lower startup cost, you can use short sales to get started. You'll find homes listed as a short sale in many real estate sections of your local paper or by searching online.
Real estate investment is a worthy type of investment if you make a smart investment. The key to making a smart investment is in doing the research beforehand that gives you knowledge of the real estate market and the value of the homes that you are considering.
If you study the history of wealthy people who have successfully invested in real estate, you will find that they all say there is a certain amount of risk involved. Taking an educated risk is better than an uninformed risk. When you know the background of a home, the cost of the home and any repairs, the neighborhood that the home is located in, and other factors, you will be able to make an informed decision.
One other issue that some people have regarding foreclosure deals is understanding the contract. Admittedly, it can sometimes be confusing to understand the legal terms of a foreclosure home sale agreement. But really it is not a lot different from any other real estate contract or clause. Read the terms closely to make sure you understand the terms before signing the agreement.
Most people who are purchasing a home realize the importance of making sure you understand the terms and conditions. You can have your lawyer look over the terms of the agreement before you sign it if you need some time to look it over. Making sure you understand the terms of your contract is important since you will be responsible for following through with the terms.
Foreclosures and Real Estate Opportunities
As we have stated before, foreclosures are a frequent occurrence in the Boston area. This is unfortunate for the owners of the homes that are foreclosed upon. But it is the perfect opportunity for new home buyers to take advantage of the situation and save a great deal of money in the home buying transaction.
Auctions, short sales, and direct deals you can make with the banker or lending institution which retook control of the home can deal with you in a matter that is beneficial to both you and the lender. Remember that they want and need to sell the property fast so that they can get as much of their investment back as possible. They realize that they will not get all of it back. Just be prepared to do some negotiations that will give you the advantage when they are deciding whether to sell the home to you or put it up for auction.
If the home goes to auction, you may have less of a chance of reeling it in. This is because there will be other bidders present at the sale and they may be willing to pay much more than you are when it comes down to the end of the auction.
That's why you should do your research on the property beforehand. That way you will make an educated decision on whether an individual feature is for you or not. Ask the advice of seasoned real estate or investment experts to give you an edge on whether you should purchase.
Always start with doing your due diligence by doing thorough research before you attend the auction or the short sale. Don't go into it without knowing the details. Start on our site, and you'll find the entire process will be much easier. We have an onboard internal real estate search engine that will allow you to find out what you need to know and to prospect for properties long before you make your final decision.
By comparing many different properties in the Boston area, you will be more equipped to handle the opportunities as they present themselves and you will know which ones are not for you.
Finally, searching for foreclosures in the Boston area is not difficult. Our search engine does much of this for you. The work starts after that. Once you find a property you are interested in, it may be a good idea to create a list of questions that you want to ask the owner or banker who is in charge of the property.
Knowing who you will be dealing with is half the battle when it comes to making real estate deals that you want to look into.
If you are in the market for a Boston property, we can help by providing you with the essential information. Then you can take it from there.
Hundreds of houses go into foreclosure every day in Boston. Don't let a good home go to waste. Instead, find out what your options are and compare properties that are available in the Boston area as a result of foreclosure. You just may find the home of your dreams at a fraction of the price!
For homeowners who get into a foreclosure situation, they may be looking to free themselves from the burden of a home they cannot afford. New or first-time home buyers can benefit from this unfortunate situation by cashing in on the savings.
Best of all, it gives a good house a home.