Another problem you will have when dealing with foreclosures is banks are not under the same rules of disclosure that a normal seller might be. They have never occupied the homes and don’t know about plumbing problems or mold problems and all the homes are sold as is. I would always suggest that you as the buyer pay for and get a home inspection. This will tell you what you need to do to the home and what problems there might be for you to address. Do not think you are going to take those problems to the bank like you would a normal seller It is also important to realize that these people were getting evicted from their homes. This was a very stressful time in their lives. Many times they would take out their frustration on the home itself. These people would also strip the home of anything of value. They take appliances, air conditioning and heating units. In some homes they would even strip it of copper pipes and wiring. So to say that sometimes you may not be buying a home in optimal condition would be an understatement.
Foreclosures are cheaper also because of the banks. Banks are not in the business of owning homes but giving loans. They want these homes off their books a quickly as possible. Because they want them off the books they do not wait for the best offer possible to come in. They will take the first offer look at it and say yes or no. Now if you are thinking about low balling a bank so to have a better negotiating position, don’t. Banks do not negotiate if the offer is not in their parameters they will just say no and not send another lower number they can live with and have them fix them before closing. The banks will not do this remember they are selling the property as is.