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Problems that buyers may face with a foreclosed home

It has been several years since The Money Pit was in theaters, but prospective homebuyers may cringe at the idea of experiencing the nightmares faced by the couple in the movie. When it comes to issues regarding a home’s structure and safety, this is no laughing matter. Despite the economy improving, there are still many vacant homes in Miami and throughout Florida, which have gone through a foreclosure.

Buyers who are considering a foreclosed home or short sale usually find themselves in a different situation than if they are buying a home that the owner has willingly put on the market. According to Zillow, the bank is the owner of a foreclosed home and it does not have the same interest in providing a residence in immaculate condition. Often, a former homeowner will strip the house of anything that can be sold, including kitchen appliances, faucets and fixtures. In some cases, a former owner who is angry at losing the home may intentionally cause damage. It would be rare for the bank to repair or replace these items.

Also, warns the Washington Post, prospective buyers looking at foreclosed homes should understand that homes which have stood vacant for some time tend to fall into disrepair. Potentially serious problems that would otherwise be addressed by the former homeowner may be missed in a foreclosed home. These could include wiring and plumbing issues, code violations and structural damage.

The price of a short sale or foreclosed home can be attractive. It is worth noting that “buyer beware” should apply in these cases, as most foreclosed homes are sold as is.

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