Contrary to popular belief, buying a foreclosure doesn't guarantee a great deal on a home. In fact, the BC Supreme Court oversees every step of the foreclosure process, including the purchase price, meaning homes don't get sold for pennies on the dollar.

That being said, foreclosed properties can offer some bargains in some instances. For example if the house is in poor condition or has sat on the market for an extended period of time with little or no interest, a lender will cut its losses and take less than their original offer.

Prospective buyers should also understand that foreclosed homes are not typically move-in ready. As a buyer, you will receive the home as is, and the move-in condition will depend on the previous owner. 

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Tips for Buying a Vancouver Island Foreclosure

Are you interested in purchasing a foreclosed home on Vancouver Island? Forclosures differ greatly from a regular real estate transaction so make sure you consult with a professional before moving forward with a purchase. These tips are a great place to start.

Hire the right agent

The foreclosure process is a complicated one, and one that takes a long time to complete. That's why it's in your best interests to hire a professional, especially an agent who specializes in foreclosed homes. Lenders often form relationships with real estate agents, and often the same agents handle the bulk of their REO properties. Seek out these agents, as they can sometimes offer leads on foreclosed homes yet to be listed. To a prospective buyer, it can be the difference between winning or missing out on your dream home. 

Get pre-approved by a lender

Being pre-approved by a lender before you start your home search will put you a step above the competition. The best deals on foreclosed properties happen quickly, meaning if you do not have your finances in line, you'll lose to a buyer who is better prepared. Knowing your maximum spend will also help you narrow down a foreclosed home that you can afford.

Carefully inspect the home's condition

All too often buyers get caught up in the price, and fail to carefully inspect a foreclosed home for problems. The longer the home has been vacant, the greater the likelihood that the home has been damaged. Was the property unoccupied during the winter? You may want to check the pipes for cracks. Also, don't forget to look for signs of leaks, which over time will create a host of problems including mold and water damage.