It is likely that when you hear about government foreclosure you think of the police storming in and taking over someone’s home. Not many people realize that banks are not the only ones who can foreclose on property, because the government can do the same and not just to homes but also to boats, ranches, and farms. The U.S. government does have the right to seize property if for instance you don’t pay your taxes or have fallen behind on a veteran’s assistance loan. Though some of this property may be used for programs in the community, most of it is sold through a government foreclosure auction.
You can find a list of properties to be sold by government foreclosure auctions for free. There is no point in paying for this service, since you can hunt it down on your own for nothing. The simplest way is to find the U.S. Department of Treasury website and find their listings. In addition to finding homes listed, they also have everything from office equipment to boats.
Changes By State
Government foreclosure auctions are a little more complicated than the usual auction where you show up and raise your hand, pay and immediately take the item home. It’s more like an eBay auction. Each state has its own set of guidelines as far as when, where, and how you place bids on these properties. In some states, you only need to bring ten percent of your bid with you in order to win, but in others you need to bring the full amount of the property. That is a huge difference in what you could be expected to pay right away.
Once you win an auction of any sort, there is not going back on your commitment. Before bidding on a government foreclosure auction, you must find out as much vital information on the property as possible. You are responsible for checking on the property’s condition yourself. At times there may be people still occupying the home, so it may be difficult to get an inspection.
If the home is still occupied and you want to secure the property quicker, you may be able to directly buy it from the homeowners before it is sold at auction. In this way, the government foreclosure auction is stopped. First, you must figure out which broker is responsible for the auction of that property and notify them of your intentions. Again, laws vary from state to state.
Government foreclosure auctions are not actually handled by government agencies. If they did everything themselves, nothing would ever make it through the process. Brokers and real estate agents within the state of the property are responsible for overseeing the auction and making sure it is done correctly.