Fact or Fiction: Foreclosure Auctions

Staff

Foreclosure auctions are held in secret chambers in the courthouse, and you need a password to get in.

Foreclosure auctions are always held in public places, often on courthouse steps or at the home being auctioned off.

If you buy a foreclosed house, you may be liable for past-due utility bills.

Buyer beware: A number of past debts, including utilities, may come with the auctioned home.

In 2010, 2.87 million property owners were in default.

Unfortunately, it's a fact, and that number is projected to jump 20 percent in 2011.

Of the three stages of foreclosure, auction is where you're likely to find the best deals.

Most experts believe that you can strike the best deals in pre-foreclosure, before the auction ever occurs.

If the home you just won at auction has renters, you can evict them immediately.

It will be up to you to evict the renters, but if a lease preceded the foreclosure, the lease is valid, and they can stay until it's up.

You can always inspect a home inside and out before you bid at an auction.

You're buying the home as is, and unfortunately, you'll rarely be able to go inside and check things out before you bid.

If yours is the winning bid at a foreclosure auction, you can negotiate that price down later.

Be sure to bid carefully! Your bid, should it be the winner, is final.

There could be additional mortgages on the home that you, as the winning bidder, will have to pay.

You'll have to pay any older loans above and beyond what you paid to the auctioning company.

No matter where you live, you must pay your winning bid the day you win the auction.

The law varies by state, with some states requiring full payment and others requiring a percentage of the sales price the day of the auction.

You can't buy your own foreclosed home when it goes to auction.

You can buy your own foreclosed home, but it's rarely a wise investment. It's best to do what you can to avoid foreclosure in the first place.

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Foreclosures are projected to jump 20 percent in 2011, and many of those foreclosed homes will be up for auction. Are you savvy enough to grab a deal at a foreclosure auction? Take our fact-or-fiction quiz and find out!

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