You may want to take a glance at the local Sheriff Sales and bank activity before you begin your move.
In this market, every buyer and seller is being impacted by foreclosures in the area. Although Pennsylvania and Delaware in general and the Philadelphia area in particular have not seen the overwhelming volume of foreclosures seen in states like California or Florida, we continue to see a steady stream of foreclosure properties on the market.
As a potential seller this has various impacts. If you are facing foreclosure, the sooner you speak to your bank, the more options you may have. You may be able to work out alternative loan possibilities or you may be able to sell your property as a short sale to avoid the financial hit and repercussions of a foreclosure. If you are a traditional seller, you must be aware of the foreclosure and bank-owned property pricing and activity in your area so that you do not inadvertently price yourself out of the market before you even get started - potentially costing you additional time and money in the long run.
As a potential buyer, there are multiple ways to approach this market. Some people are focusing on pre-foreclosure properties as they feel they can obtain the best value through a short sale. Others do not want the uncertainty and time commitment of a short sale and prefer to wait until the property goes to foreclosure to either purchase at a Sheriff Sale auction or when it is listed for sale after foreclosure. We are also seeing some of the best values outside the foreclosure arena as sellers may have the resources and/or need to sell at an equal or lower price through a traditional sale.
Regardless of the option you chose, it can be beneficial to understand the local foreclosure activity by researching the sales through the local Sheriff's Office. The sale specifics vary by county but can give you a general feel for the market and volume of future bank owned properties. Please find below the direct links to the local Sheriff Sales listed by State and County:
All the options for both the buyers and sellers have their benefits, but it is important that no matter which path you chose that you do your research to understand the market and the advantages/disadvantages of buying through each different channel.
As always, if you are thinking of a move or need any additional information, please do not hesitate to contact me anytime.