What to Know When Purchasing a Foreclosure

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When you’re buying a home, it can be tempting to look at foreclosure properties. They are often priced lower and you can find some great homes in areas you may not be able to afford otherwise. However, there are some things you need to know before you buy a foreclosure. 


You might not be getting the steal of a deal you think you are.

While the perception around buying a foreclosure has always been that you are getting a better deal, that doesn’t necessarily hold true anymore. 


Foreclosures typically occur when the lender (the bank) repossesses a home after the previous owners fail to pay their mortgage. Foreclosures can also occur as a result of a court ruling. In both scenarios, banks and the court system have an obligation to sell foreclosed properties for a fair market value. The market value of the home is typically determined by a realtor and a property appraiser. 


From my personal experience, the appraised value usually ends up being what the property is listed for, but it doesn’t always coincide with market value, meaning the property can be over or under-valued. 


At the moment, however, the current market could work in your favour. Read more about taking advantage of the spring housing market in my most recent blog post

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Bank sale vs Court-ordered

As mentioned, foreclosures can be a result of the bank’s decision or a court ruling, each of which will shape your experience when purchasing the property. 


Bank sales usually go a bit faster, as the bank is eager to sell the property and recuperate costs. Negotiations are handled by a bank employee using certain guidelines, meaning that it usually takes at most a few days to hear back with counteroffers. That doesn’t mean there isn’t the potential for delays, in some circumstances, offers can take longer due to legal red tape. 


Court-ordered sales are different. In the case of judicial foreclosures, a court date is set and a judge decides on the best price for the property from all of the offers submitted. This means your timeline is decided by the courts, and you may not even get to purchase the property. 


Be prepared to do a home inspection

When you are buying a home, you can typically make a property inspection a condition of the sale. However, foreclosures can often require that any offer submitted does not have conditions.  This means that you may be required to get an inspection, which can cost about $650, prior to even submitting an offer. Inspections will also give you a better idea of what the potential costs of fixing up the home may be. 


Additionally, just because it’s a foreclosure property doesn’t mean there won’t be competition. Paying for an inspection can be risky, as there could be others doing the same thing in preparation to purchasing the property. 


What you see is what you get, literally

With other properties, you may be able to negotiate for certain terms like a professional cleaning or items to be removed from the property like an old playset. Foreclosure properties are sold as-is, where is at the time of possession, leaving no room for these types of negotiations. If you by chance find a foreclosed property that is considered to be a steal deal, be prepared for that property to need (potentially costly) renovations. 


Want some renovation suggestions? I’ve got them for you here.


Additionally, if a seller or a tenant is living in the property prior to your possession date, there is always the risk that the property may not be in the same state that it was when you originally viewed or inspected the property. Unfortunately with foreclosure properties, you are responsible for whatever damages may have occurred, or whatever items are left on the property.


Overall, foreclosure properties can be an interesting option when purchasing a home. It is critical to have an experienced and knowledgeable realtor to walk you through the process and ensure that the property is right for you. 


Due to the many extra steps and potential risks involved with the purchase of foreclosure properties I am hesitant to recommend them for first-time home buyers. However, they can be great properties for investors to add to their portfolios, or for someone who isn’t afraid to do some (or a lot) of home renovations. 


Looking into foreclosure properties? Let me help you with that!

As one of Edmonton’s top REALTORS, I have the experience and knowledge necessary to guide you through the process of purchasing a foreclosure property.  Contact Jeneen by phone: (780) 904-4240 or by email: jeneens@remax.net


Hi, I’m Jeneen Marchant!

I’m here to help you find you during your next Real Estate transaction. Home ownership is a beautiful thing and I love seeing my buyers happily opening the door to their new home on possession day. I also get great satisfaction from helping my sellers get the best price possible for their home when it is time to move on to another property.

11 Local Edmonton Non-Profit Organizations to Support This Holiday Season


The holidays will look a bit different this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Flights may be cancelled, tables will be emptier, and the big family gatherings that we are used to attending will be replaced with smaller indoor events or avoided altogether. 


Even though it has been an extremely tough year for many of us, practicing gratitude is more important than ever. 


This year, I am extremely grateful for my family, my support system, and every single one of my clients who have trusted me to help them buy and sell properties during this difficult time. 


I am also thankful for the countless non-profit organizations and charities in Edmonton that are working around the clock to ensure that individuals in our city get the support they need and deserve. 


Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many non-profit organizations and charities in Edmonton are struggling to support our city’s most vulnerable. Let’s show how thankful we are for these essential organizations by supporting them over the holidays. 




Below, I’ve listed 11 Edmonton-based organizations that could use our help this holiday season.





1. Canadian Mental Health Association (Edmonton Region)

CMHA Edmonton provides Edmontonians with access to mental health resources such as the 24-hour Distress Line, suicide support services, housing programs, and peer support services.


2. Edmonton’s Holiday Hamper Program

Edmonton’s Holiday hamper Program provides festive meals and gifts to families who may be struggling to celebrate the holiday season. 


3. Boyle Street Community Services

Boyle Street Community Services provides community supports for our city’s most vulnerable populations, offering over 40 different programs and services to homeless individuals in Edmonton. 


4. WIN House 

WIN House gives women and children of all ages and cultures a safe place to flee from domestic abuse and violence.


5. iHuman Youth Society 

iHuman Youth Society provides programs and services to marginalized youth in Edmonton who has been impacted by poverty, intergenerational trauma, addiction, mental health, abuse, racism, discrimination, and exploitation.


6. Momentum Walk-In Counselling

Momentum is a mental health counselling agency located in Edmonton that supports clients who would otherwise be unable to access counselling because of long waitlists or financial barriers. 


7. Edmonton’s Food Bank 

Edmonton’s Food Bank provides nutritious food, free of charge, to people in need in our community while seeking solutions to the causes of hunger.


8. Edmonton Centre for Race and Culture 

The Centre for Race and Culture works within the community to advocate and support individual, social, and systemic change to address racism and discrimination in Edmonton and beyond. 


9. Caregivers Alberta

Caregiver’s Alberta improves the lives of Alberta’s caregivers by providing group and one-on-one support that helps them connect with others, navigate the system, and look after themselves while providing care.


10. Edmonton Meals on Wheels 

Edmonton Meals on Wheels provides nutritious meals and groceries to individuals in our community who need help, especially those who are housebound. 


11. Realtors Community Foundation

I am also a Governor and volunteer on the Realtor’s Community Foundation which raises money for local charities under the realms of Hunger, Shelter, and Accessibility.  We support most of these listed above and dozens of others.  I donate money for every home I help someone buy or sell, as well as countless hours raising money and volunteering.   

Do you need to buy or sell a home during the COVID-19 pandemic? Contact Jeneen by phone: (780) 904-4240 or by email: jeneens@remax.net.


Hi, I’m Jeneen Marchant!

I’m here to help you find you during your next Real Estate transaction.
Home ownership is a beautiful thing and I love seeing my buyers happily opening the door to their new home on possession day. I also get great satisfaction from helping my sellers get the best price possible for their home when it is time to move on to another property.