Top 10 Most Searched Foreclosure Cities In The U.S.

Where are all the foreclosures?

Well, in today’s market, foreclosed homes are located in just about every corner of the United States. Long gone are the days when distressed real estate was hard-to-find, valuable treasure. Make no mistake, foreclosures, short sales and other distressed property types are typically still cheaper than their traditional counterparts; however, thanks to the mortgage meltdown a few years back and the current nationwide economic crisis, they are significantly more abundant.

In fact, there are so many foreclosures in some “hot spots” that banks and lenders don’t have the time or resources to repossess them in a timely fashion. That’s the reason some folks can live in their homes mortgage-free for months or even years, as well as the reason for the “shadow” inventory — abandoned/vacant homes not yet “in the system” — that sits idle for so long.

Indeed, foreclosures are essentially everywhere. And until the lenders and banks catch up, or until the economy levels out, or both, foreclosures will continue to remain everywhere well into the near future.

The good news is that foreclosed homes represent discounted real estate purchase opportunities. Banks and lenders are overwhelmed and are often eager to sell their assets as quickly as possible, even if it means slashing prices by as much as 50 percent or more. Always remember: Banks and lenders are in the money business, not the real estate business.

Cash is king.

So, since we’ve established that foreclosures are everywhere and that they still offer buyers and investors tremendous value — especially when you factor in historically low mortgage interest rates — we thought that we’d take a look at the most popular areas for foreclosure searches throughout the nation.

Just because there are more foreclosures on the market and unemployment is high, doesn’t mean that competition among buyers doesn’t exist. On the contrary, competition is stiff in desirable locations nationwide. In fact, it’s common for forward-thinking investors and others to cherry-pick the best deals, renovate and rent/re-sell them for profit.

It’s the primary reason Government-Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs) like Fannie Mae have had to implement programs such as “First Look,” which locks out investors from purchasing properties for a few days so first-time buyers don’t miss out on all the great opportunities.

In any case, here are the Top 10 most-searched cities for foreclosed homes for sale*:

  1. Los Angeles, Calif.
  2. Orlando. Fla.
  3. Fort Lauderdale. Fla.
  4. Miami, Fla.
  5. Houston, Texas
  6. Atlanta, Ga.
  7. West Palm Beach, Fla.
  8. Dallas, Texas
  9. Chicago, Ill.
  10. Las Vegas, Nevada
foreclosures

Florida, with four cities in the list, is clearly a major point of interest for many buyers and investors. That’s not too surprising, considering the climate and reputation for being a retirement and/or vacation home destination. In addition, the “Sunshine State” took a beating when the housing market crashed — it has consistently remained at or near the top of the collective foreclosure list since it tanked.

Even still, homeowners who paid too much at the height of the market are still struggling to get their heads “above water” on mortgages that simply no longer make sense (or cents).

It’s also no surprise that Los Angeles, where the population density is high and the real estate footprint is perhaps just as dense, sits atop the list. Houston, Atlanta, Chicago and Las Vegas are also in demand, indicating that if buyers and investors are interested in investing in these areas that they better be prepared and on top of their games.

Searching and finding foreclosures is clearly a small piece of a very competitive pie in many areas throughout the United States. It’s the first, albeit perhaps most important, step in a process that could mean the difference between making (or saving) tens of — if not hundreds of — thousands of dollars.

The best thing that you can do to improve your chances of success is to do your homework, know your target market inside-out. This way, you can identify a deal the moment you see it and are able to move fast to ensure that no one else beats you to the punch.

Timing is everything even when foreclosures are everywhere.

*Foreclosure data provided by Foreclosure.com

Report: Zsa Zsa Gabor House Saved From Foreclosure With Help From Facebook

Whoever thinks that nonagenarians are out of touch with modern technology might want to consider the curious foreclosure case of Zsa Zsa Gabor.

The 95-year-old former actress and socialite was apparently in danger of losing her 8,878 sq. ft. mansion in Bel-Air, Calif., because her $700,000 mortgage was in default, according to TMZ.com. With seemingly few (if any) traditional rescue options available, Gabor’s husband (legally, her eighth), Frederic Prinz von Anhalt, took to the popular social media platform to ask fans for their fiscal support.

Apparently, someone with very deep pockets answered the status update, floating Gabor and von Anhalt a $1.5 million personal loan, which must be repaid in one year or the couple will forfeit the seven-bedroom, seven-bathroom home to the good Samaritan. That shouldn’t be too hard, considering the “elegant” mansion, which sits on more than one acre of land and was recently put on the market with a sale price of $14.9 million, according to HollywoodReporter.com.

Then again, health, financial and family issues could all complicate the process if they haven’t already.

In addition to her abundance of marriages, Gabor — who was crowned Miss Hungary way back in 1936 — is perhaps most famous for her role in 1952′s “Moulin Rouge” feature film that was directed by the legendary John Huston.

And now apparently Facebook (private) fundraising.

‘Octomom’ Nadya Suleman Foreclosure Sale Delayed (Again)

The most bizarre foreclosure case in recent memory must belong to Nadya Suleman, who is also known as “Octomom” for delivering eight children at once (via in vitro fertilization) while on government-sponsored welfare to help support her other six children back in 2009.

Her unique story captured major headlines throughout the United States at the time, sparking debate about whether or not a cash-strapped, public-assisted single mother of six should be allowed to pursue excessive fertility treatments and have taxpayers pick up her tab. More than three years later, Suleman still knows how stir controversy, as well as avoid foreclosure.

According to The Orange County Register, the four-bedroom, three-bathroom home in southern California the Suleman “purchased” right around the same time as the birth of her octuplets, will remain her’s for at least another two weeks. Suleman stopped making the $3,000 monthly payments way back in 2010 on her “wrap-around mortgage,” which essentially means she holds the deed and makes payments to the original property owner, Amer Haddadin, who in turn pays the bank.

This is the second time the foreclosure sale has been postponed. She (and Haddadin) owe approximately $477,288 on the La Habra, Calif., home.

Suleman has recently filed for bankruptcy, claiming her debt-to-asset ratio is in the neighborhood of $1 million to $50,000. It’s possible that the bankruptcy claim could have delayed the latest foreclosure sale.

Meanwhile, to make ends meet, Suleman has reportedly embarked on an adult film career. We told you this was bizarre.

Game Show Host Bob Eubanks House In Westlake Village Sells In Short Sale

Whoopee!

Legendary radio personality and television game show host, Bob Eubanks, recently unloaded his Westlake Village house in Thousand Oaks, Calif., for $1.982 million in what the Los Angeles Times describes as a short sale transaction. The five-time Emmy Award winner, which includes a lifetime achievement award, purchased the 4,972 sq. ft. four-bedroom, 4.5 bathroom “Normandy-style home” for $2.66 million in 2006.

A widow in 2001, Eubanks shared the home, which he attempted unsuccessfully to sell two years ago with a sticker price $2.595 million, with his second wife and their young son.

Other luxurious amenities include wood and stone floors, custom built-in cabinetry, French doors and an office, among others. The 3.5-acre grounds feature a swimming pool with spa, a two-story play fort, an outdoor covered loggia, stone walkways and fountains.

Eubanks, 77, was the host of the super popular “The Newlywed Game,” which aired on-and-off with him as the Master of Ceremonies for a record-setting six consecutive decades. He’s apparently a card-carrying member of the Professional Rodeo Cowboys association, suggesting that perhaps he’ll mosey along to a new ranch to ride out his well-deserved retirement.

Bulk REO sales: Fannie Mae to sell foreclosed homes to investors to use as rentals

Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), which oversees mortgage-backing giants such as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, today announced a pilot program that targets real estate investors in Atlanta, Ga., Chicago, Ill., Las Vegas, Nevada, Los Angeles, Calif., Phoenix, Ariz., and areas of Florida.

Bloomberg.com reports that about 2,500 of Fannie Mae’s Real Estate-Owned (REO) homes, which are essentially foreclosure properties, will be marketed in these hot spots and offered to investors — who will agree to be “equity partners” — to buy in bulk. It is a program that is designed to “reduce taxpayer losses, stabilize neighborhoods and home values, shift to more private management of properties, and reduce the supply of REO properties in the marketplace,” according to FHFA Acting Director Edward J. DeMarco.

Real estate investors were encouraged to participate in the Bulk REO sales program — one that allows investors and public entities to purchase multiple Fannie Mae properties in one transaction — earlier this month. However, not only must they demonstrate that the have the financial ability to buy the portfolios, but they must also be able to manage the properties post-purchase. Once approved, investors will gain access to various portfolio details, as well as be provided with bidding instructions.

Freddie Mac is currently considering whether or not to follow in Fannie Mae’s forward-thinking footsteps.

For more details on the Fannie Mae bulk-sales pilot program click here.