Buying a Foreclosure or Short Sale in South Jersey

What is a Foreclosure vs a Short Sale?







In terms of distressed properties, there are two popular types in South Jersey, Short Sales and Foreclosures.  A short sale property is one in which is in the beginning states of foreclosure.  These listings come to market anytime a homeowner owes more on their home than the property is worth, and are attempting to sell the property “short.”  A foreclosure on the the other hand is a type of property that has been taken over by the lender and is past the stage of a short sale.  In these types of listings, the bank is moving quickly and taking the best offer that is submitted.  When a property gets to this stage, the bank just wants to clear it off its books, and they are ready to get rid of the property.

Where Can I find these Types of Listings?

There are different types of realtors for sellers and buyers.  Some realtors specialize in investment properties, foreclosures or in helping homeowners avoid foreclosure.  All of these types of agents would be great options for a buyer who is looking for a short sale or foreclosure in South Jersey.  You can find a list of them here.

Most of these listings are in the MLS which is the primary source for most of the information that you will need including taxes, lot size, and other details that you will need to know as a buyer.  Your realtor in South Jersey will help you in making sure you have adequate “comps” to make a good decision in terms of what type of offer to present.

What type of Agent Will I work with?

When considering what type of agent to work with, you will want to make sure there are two basic qualities in the agent.  1.  That you are comfortable and trust them and 2. That they are an agent who is experienced in working with buyers on Short Sales and Foreclosures in South Jersey.  One way to tell if your agent is experienced is how they treat you.  If your agent suggests meeting in the office for a consultation, they are committed to your success and finding you a great property.  If the agent you contact is willing to meet you anytime at the property, they are most likely a newer or less experienced agent, and might not be the best option for you as a first time or experienced buyer in the South Jersey Market.

What type of Financing or Mortgage will I need?







There are several different types of mortgages that are out there.  As a first time home buyer, you may want to consider FHA financing, which will allow you to purchase a home with as little as 3.5% down.  A second option is Conventional.  With conventional financing, you are considered a “stronger buyer” in South Jersey.  This type of financing is great if you are able to make a larger down payment, with most likely a lower rate.  Another benefit is that you will not have to pay PMI, or mortgage insurance.


What is the Buying Process?

The buying process for a short sale or foreclosure is not much different than a typical real estate transaction.  As a buyer, you will go through the standard process of signing contracts, attorney review and be allowed to order any types of inspections that you see fit.  Most commonly, buyers will order a home inspection coupled with a termite inspection.  Based on these results, you have the same flexibility as a buyer to “back out” of the contract should you determine that the work or any damage done to the home will be too much for you to take on.  Many buyers do not think they have this type of protection in buying a short sale or foreclosure in South Jersey, but they do.

What Do I do if I am a Distressed Homeowner?

In today’s economic climate, as many as 1 in 5 homeowners are in some type of distress.  For these homeowners, there are many places you can go to get information and advice based on your particular situation.  For more information on how to avoid foreclosure as well as what options you may have, click here.  There are agents who have been specifically trained as “Certified Distressed Property Experts” and these agents can be located by town.  For a list of these trained CDPE agents, click here.

About Jessica JessicaHoltzman

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