The sheer number of distressed and foreclosed properties across the nation in recent years has been "impressive" to say the least. In many towns these foreclosed properties are selling at steep discounts which has many investors heading for the contract table.

These foreclosed homes need to sell; that much is clear.

Some investors or buyers may feel a twinge of guilt that they are taking advantage of sellers, but it's important to keep in mind that these homes are already in possession of banks, not individuals, and they need to be sold in order for the glut of foreclosed property to start to decline. Buying up the foreclosed inventory can in turn help reinvigorate the market.

Due to robo-signing slowdowns in recent years the rate of foreclosure is nearly as large a chunk of the current market as it was during the peak. Distressed homes make up nearly a third of today's sales. Many homes that should have entered the market years ago are just now being put up for sale. So, suppress that feeling of guilt and understand that any sales in today's market are good sales.

According to RealtyTrac.com there are some great deals to be had. In fact, in eleven highlighted towns they showed how buyers are able to buy homes at a fifty percent discount of more over non-distressed properties.

They report, "These steep foreclosure discounts are available in a wide range of markets, with a wide range of average home prices. At the high end are markets like San Francisco and Bridegeport, Connecticut, where the average price of a foreclosure was more than $300,000 -- still 50 percent below the average price of homes not in foreclosure in those markets."

Some of these eleven markets had exceptional pricing below the $100,000 mark, making affordability rates sky-high. These cities were: Saginaw, Michigan; Toledo, Ohio; Memphis, Tennessee; St. Louis, Missouri; and Milwaukee, Minnesota. Leading the way with an average 68 percent discount was Trenton, New Jersey, where foreclosed properties are selling for an average of $108,302.

The remaining towns on the 50 percent discount list were: Springfield, Massachusetts; New Haven, Connecticut; and Atlanta, Georgia.

Still other cities are seeing a huge portion of their sales being attributed to foreclosure or bank-owned properties. Most of these areas were found in the state of California or in the city of Las Vegas, Nevada. These areas, though, were some of the hardest hit when the real estate bubble burst and the subprime mortgage crisis came to a head.

This means that the opportunity for great deals is ripe in these regions. Home prices are still on the decline across most of the nation, but with discounts like these investors can afford for prices to drop even further before they see profits dwindle. In many areas these foreclosed homes can be repaired and flipped for big profits. The bottom line is now is a great time to buy, both as a homeowner or investor.

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