How to Find Bank-Owned Properties to Invest in

Want a bargain-priced property? Use these resources to look for bank-owned homes.

Bank owned property shutterstock_44006419 Bank-owned properties can offer quite the deal. In most cases, these are homes that were passed up during a foreclosure auction, and now, the bank is on its last line of defense. They need to sell the property — at any price — or risk losing out on their investment entirely.

For these reasons, you can typically buy bank-owned homes at steep discounts. This makes them great candidates for flips, rentals, or other investment properties. They can also be a good option for homebuyers struggling in today’s high-priced market, as long as they’re willing to put in the work (these properties are rarely move-in ready and are often in need of repair).

Are you on the hunt for a bank-owned property? Here’s where to start your search.

Go to the banks themselves.

Most major banks have websites that list the properties they currently own and have available for purchase.

Here are some of the biggest ones:

  • Bank of America
  • Chase
  • Wells Fargo
  • Flagstar
  • PNC
  • Truist (formerly BB&T)
  • Fifth Third Bank
  • First Citizens Bank
  • Republic Bank
  • Huntington
  • People’s United Bank
  • Regions Bank
  • HSBC
  • U.S. Bank

Smaller banks, lenders, and credit unions may have their own websites, too, so make sure to check with local institutions in your market.

Use an REO platform

You can also find online platforms that cater specifically to real estate owned (REO), bank-owned, and foreclosure listings, so these can be a great place to look as well.

Some of these include:

  • Auction.com
  • Hubzu
  • RealtyTrac
  • Xome
  • Equator
  • Foreclosures.com

While all the listings on these sites may not be bank-owned, the majority include only distressed properties, which usually come at a discount compared to traditional, more move-in-ready homes.

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Hire an investment-focused real estate agent

A great local real estate agent can also help in your search. You’ll specifically want one who’s well-versed in the local investment scene and has a strong professional network. If they’re connected enough, there’s a good chance they already know a few potential properties you can look at.

They also may be able to connect you to local banks with inventory or alert you of any upcoming sheriff’s sales or other property auctions you might want on your radar.

Check the MLS

Surprisingly enough, many banks also list their properties in the general MLS, so you can usually find them on listing sites like Realtor.com, ZillowRedfin, and other popular places.

Just keep in mind: They’ll typically be mixed in with all the other properties, so you’ll need to use filters carefully to find what you want. (For example, on Zillow, you can add keywords to your search. “Foreclosure” might be a smart one in this case.) You can also filter by price (you can even put $0 on some sites) and see what comes up.

Bank-owned inventory may rise soon

Foreclosure activity has been increasing steadily over the last few months, so there’s a good chance more bank-owned inventory may be hitting the market soon. Make sure you have a good handle on your budget and keep your eye on the various listing sites. Though there’s typically less competition for these properties, you may still need to act fast — especially if you’re in a particularly hot locale.

Source: The Motley Fool