Foreclosed homes are still dominating the national real estate market. In fact, the first three months of 2010, Realtytrac reported that foreclosure filings rose 7% nationwide to more than 930,000 compared with the previous quarter. Nevada ranked as the number one state with foreclosure filings, then Arizona, Florida and California. The least affected states were West Virginia, with 1 in every 4,010 homes receiving a foreclosure notice, Vermont with 1 in every 8,932 homes receiving some kind of foreclosure notice, and North Dakota with 1 in every 2,161 homes receiving a foreclosure notice. Even with many distressed homeowners taking advantage of government foreclosure prevention programs such as HAMP and HAFA, foreclosures seem like they are here to stay for awhile until all the inventory gets absorbed.
Investors, both domestic and foreign and first time home buyers have been snatching up foreclosed houses all over West Virginia in all price ranges and neighborhoods. If you are looking for West Virginia foreclosed real estate listings, the best place to find them is with a West Virginia Realtor. Other places to look are Internet sites, the newspaper and driving by neighborhoods and looking for signs. There are plenty of government foreclosure listings as well. For May 2010, Realtytrac reported there were 114 new West Virginia foreclosure filings. That averaged to 1 in every 1,139 homes for the month of May that received a foreclosure filing.
Why Buy Foreclosed Houses in West Virginia?
According to the national crime index, West Virginia has the lowest crime rate in the country. Families are always looking for safe low crime neighborhoods to live. Investing in foreclosed houses and renting them out is just one way to fill this need. West Virginia has expanded their focus on tourism, and it is a booming industry bringing more tourists into the area. Many visitors are investing in vacation homes. There are abundant national parks and forests and hot springs for nature lovers. The White Sulphur Springs has been a popular resort destination for many years. In the summer, there is boating, fishing, white-water rafting, camping and hiking. Winter offers skiing, snowmobiling, and cross country skiing. West Virginia has something for everyone.
Foreclosure Property Auctions
If you are interested in finding properties at substantial discounts, you might want to buy them at property auctions. The good thing about West Virginia is that there are no rights of redemption laws that allow the former owner to redeem their property after the foreclosure sale. So if you are the lucky bidder at the foreclosure auction, you don’t have to worry about losing your investment because a former owner ended up redeeming the home back. There are some risks associated with foreclosed houses purchased at property auctions that you should be aware of such as:
- You cannot get title insurance
- Properties are sold in an “as is” condition, and you generally don’t get to inspect them
- You are responsible for the costs of evicting the former owner or any tenants
If you are an experienced investor/buyer, then property auctions are a great place to pick up bargain foreclosed houses. For new investors or first time home buyers, buying pre-foreclosure short sales or REO’s are a better idea. There is less risk because you can inspect the home, and you do receive title insurance. You still get to purchase properties at or below market value. West Virginia has many good investment opportunities so buyers/investors should take advantage and buy foreclosed houses.