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Money Matters

8 Things To Consider When Buying Foreclosed Property

It's a more affordable choice, but it will take patience and perseverance according to these moms.

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If you’ve been a member of home-related groups for months, chances are, you’ve seen posts about people acquiring foreclosed properties with the help of a bank or the Home Development Mutual Fund (Pag-IBIG). This path to homeownership has given families an option to finally have homes of their own, especially since it’s a more affordable choice compared to buying a brand-new house and lot.

Seeing the term foreclosed might be overwhelming to some, but fortunately banks and even Pag-IBIG have made the steps on how to acquire a foreclosed house available on their websites.

Do you simply submit the requirements? Will following the steps guarantee you’ll get the house you’re eyeing? As shared by mom Aisa Paril whose family got a house through Pag-IBIG, it will take patience, perseverance, and the possibility of bidding on different properties multiple times.

Dos and don’ts of buying foreclosed properties

If you're deciding whether or not to buy a foreclosed property, it's important to know the ins and outs of the process first. Are there must-dos or things to avoid? We've put together a quick guide below to help you.

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Achieve the home of your dreams that’s within your budget with these tips:

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DO: Know where to look

You can find a list of foreclosed properties for sale on Pag-IBIG’s website or on the website of the bank where you’re planning to apply a housing loan.

If you’re leaning toward a bank, you can search for properties for sale online by typing in the name of the bank + “foreclosed properties for sale” on the search bar. You will find a list of properties with Inquire and Make Offer buttons.

DON’T: Limit your property search

Check with friends if they have property leads. Melissa Gomez-Calayag, who acquired a foreclosed property in Laguna, learned about a property for sale through a friend.

Aside from asking around, you can also scroll through posts on home-related groups for possible leads. Always triple check the documents and visit the property personally to avoid problems.

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DO: Prepare a property wish list

Before you start searching for a property, list the qualities you’re looking for in a home – including the size of the house, the type of house (loft, single-detached, multi-storey, etc), the location, and other specifics you have in mind. Make sure you also note the budget you have allotted or your price ceiling. Being ready with this document can help you narrow down your search.

DON’T: Ignore first impressions

As mashvisor.com explains, “don’t ignore feelings of worry or you’ll find yourself regretting your decisions in the future.” A house can meet all your requirements but if something feels off the moment you step inside it, don’t ignore your gut feel.

DO: Thoroughly inspect the house and the documents related to it

Buying a home – whether it’s brand-new or a foreclosed property – involves spending your savings. Make sure you’re investing wisely by triple checking the documents and inspecting every corner of the house. When it comes to inspecting the property, this includes checking for leaks and faulty electric connections.

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“You need to really check for damages like leaks,” says Melissa. “It’s important that there’s a stable Internet connection and good water supply. Most importantly, check the documents of the property including the title and that there are no unpaid bills.”

DON’T: Let possible renovations deter you from making a purchase

It’s a reality that you need to save up for possible renovations when acquiring a foreclosed property. The house can still be in good condition but you still need to make it your own.

You don’t need to give a property an overhaul and just focus on simple upgrades that create a big impact. Melissa and her husband Ezekiel were lucky enough to get a house with a good foundation and it just took them three months to make it look brand-new.

DO: Get ready to deal with former homeowners who might still be living in the property

There are instances wherein some properties are still occupied even if there are new owners. This can be a tricky situation to handle, especially if you’re ready to move in.

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“Huwag po kumuha ng foreclosed na may nakatira kasi masakit sa ulo at mahirap magpaalis. Hanggang maaari po, unoccupied ang kunin,” Aisa advises. Pag-IBIG specifies which properties are occupied or not so you can steer clear of the former to avoid extra stress.

If you do end up buying an occupied foreclosed property, it's best to have an open mind and talk to the former owners properly. Instead of asking them to leave as soon as possible, you can give them enough time to look for a new home before you move in.

DON’T: Let opportunities pass you by

When it comes to buying a home, we want the best for the family in a price we can afford. Taking too long to decide may cause you to lose the property to another buyer but this doesn’t mean you should make hasty decisions.

Decide quickly but be rational. Make sure you discuss this with your husband, wife, or partner so you can arrive at a decision as a team.

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This story originally appeared on Smartparenting.com.ph.

* Minor edits have been made by the Realliving.com.ph editors.

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