Bank Foreclosures

When you perform an inspection on a bank foreclosed property for a prospective buyer, do you charge more since it usually takes longer to write the report because of all of the defects found?

Nope. Unless they are in a state of total disrepair, they are the same price. When I send off my contract, the cover letter tells my client that the inspection price is based on a home in average condition. If the property is in a state of disrepair that would entail extra services or time, the price will be adjusted prior to the start of the inspection.

There have been times when I felt like I should have gotten more for my services on bank owned homes. The problem is you just never know until you get there. Sometimes you put more work in and other times it’s easier. Unless you are doing a large amount of homes in great disrepair I think it evens out in the end.

Among the other questions such as size, location and age, I am also asking if its a foreclosure, its general condition and how long has it been sitting.

If I feel its a real mess then I will charge extra and explain that to my client of which they understand. I think the most I charged extra was probably around $100…the average is around $50.00

charge whatever you can get away with. I have a charge on my price list for Extra Time.


It is one of the questions I ask, “Is it a foreclosure or bank owned/short sale”?

As to how much more I charge…:mrgreen:

Do you provide a discount then when the home is immaculate?

Though bank owned property can have more defects I find that balanced by the fact that it is empty.

Yes, I ask for every bit of information, search all the records, drive to the property and take pictures, walk around the property and then break in, take as many pictures as I can, beam myself back in my transporter, then tell the client how much the fee is!:mrgreen::mrgreen:

It is understood that any home will have a certain amount of deficiencies which is covered by the standard fee. Foreclosure, bank owned, and short sale properties almost always require more time to document everything that is wrong.

In some instances, some “regular” homes, more specifically, those that have been remodeled, in particular by the homeowner, also require more time and are charged accordingly.

Good point here… I’ve been asked more recently about this from a liability standpoint. The concensus is that because the house is typically empty, it makes it slightly easier?

Not only that, but it helps mitigate the he said/she said situation about what was visible at the time of inspection unlike houses that are currently being lived in.

Not only that, but many foreclosures have no appliances, some are missing toilets and sinks, etc. It’s easier and less liability to write “none” than to take the time to inspect them if they were present.

Houses sitting empty here in Florida tend to accumulate humidity which can trigger mold spore propragation… I normally attempt to up-sell a mold inspection otherwise I have the buyer sign a mold waiver.

no… most of my bank owned or soon to be look like this…can you say gravy…last 10 or so have been 2003 or newer…take the cake when you can…lol…:mrgreen:

I had a neighbor that lived across the street from my house when my grandmother lived here.
He was running a Meth lab in the house and got caught and lost everything in the legal proceedings.
Because of where I live and the fact that up and until last year there was no Uniform Building Codes and no permits required for any interior improvements - he basically trashed the house and then walked away from it.
The house was double plank and built into a T with two rooms on the back side - side by side and two rooms in the front - one opposed to the other.
The timber planking that was the rafters in the ceiling of the second floor were 2 x 8 and were there to keep tension on the walls and to have something to nail the lath’s to for the plaster.
There was no insulation used since the structure was more then 100 years old and there was no vents in the attic space - since the roofs were all slate.
When I tried to explain to the people who bought it at the Tax Sale - they just shrugged their shoulders when I told them that you cannot make a cathedral ceiling by just removing the joists in the ceiling and insulating the rafters. I went one step further and told them that the walls were either going to balloon out or the roof was going to fall in.
They sold the house one month later to some people who were young and stupid and when I told them what I had told the people who purchased the house - they didn’t listen either.
Now having a house that was a METH lab has all sorts of unique issues.
The house was completely full of trash and junk and it needed someone to rent a dumpster and haul it all away - yet the people who bought it has been dragging the stuff out of the house and burning it in a big pile in the yard.

In my personal opinion - if people do not want your advice - then sometimes it is better to just walk away.
On the other hand, if they are looking for a 100% guarantee that there is nothing wrong with the house or that the issues that needs to be addressed are listed in the report and there is no hidden issues - then you would really need to charge those people and do exploratory work and bust holes into walls and look for what is behind the walls before you make your report. If there is one thing that I have learned in my 8 years of doing remodels is that you always have to expect the worst and hope for the best. Especially in a older home.
Many times when people knows that they are about to loose the house - they will stop doing the maintenance and upkeep and will run the house into the ground…

There really is no winners here when it comes to a repo house or one that was sold for taxes or a Federal Marshall’s sale.