The most common "I want a killer deal" inquiry I get are from those looking for foreclosure property in San Diego - at 50 cents on the dollar. After all, it is a buyer market, sellers are desperate, and foreclosures almost out number real estate agents right?
Well... not quite. But how about $90,000 under market, when the market is was $399,000 based on identical units selling just two days earlier?
Our client needed a place near SDSU for the freshman son. The call came in on a Sunday morning, "Two bedrooms with two baths and walking distance to campus. And since it has to be within walking distance, we need off street parking."
On it's surface that seems like an easy request. There is a ton of condo inventory around San Diego State. The problem is that the reason for the unsold inventory is price. One of the defining characteristics of that segment of the real estate market is that those tend to be "kiddie condos". Mom and dad buy a condo for the kid, add a roommate or two, and the property carries itself until Johnny graduates, 5 or 6 years later (it's SDSU - 4 years and out is almost unheard of here). Mom and Dad sell to the next parental unit(s) and in the process walk away with a tidy profit.
Something happened in 2005 though. Prices stopped going up. Now a large portion of the inventory is worth less today than it was 2-3 years ago. Mom and dad have some interesting choices. Rent it out, sell it for a loss if they have equity or can bring money to the table, try a short sale, or let the bank foreclose.
The only below market deal to be found in the above scenario is buying from the bank, and then only if there was two loans where the foreclosure on the first wiped out the second. That is the deal we found for our clients. The property originally had two loans; an 80% first for $319,000 and a 20% second for $80,000. When the buyer defaulted, the lender on the first foreclosed. The lien holder of the second got zilch.
So how did we land the deal?
We didn't give anyone else a chance. The first day the property was ready to be put on the market with their agent, we were waiting. The offer was on the bank's desk the next business day. Knowing the hot buttons for this particular lender, we structured it in such a way that made it impossible for them to say "No". A quick escrow and now we get email updates with their soon to be marketed REOs.
Anybody else want to find a deal?
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