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If you’re looking for a property bargain and enjoy the energy of a live auction, Auction.com is the website for you. Here, you can explore a range of different properties throughout the US, placing inquiries and bids on those which excite you most. The site also offers a range of training services, plus a lot of general advice on property auctions and foreclosure law.
Our first impressions of Auction.com weren’t brilliant, but the more we explored the site, the more we liked it. Part of their problem is that their home page and front page for the foreclosures section don’t look all that appealing. Some of the properties available are, quite frankly, pretty run down. But you have to look past the veneer and look for the jewels underneath.
The website is easy to use, allowing you to quickly locate properties using a zip code, county, city, state or property ID. You can also save your favorite properties to find them at a later date. Whilst searching was simple, we would like a few more options to help narrow down the results in busy areas.
The variety of properties is interesting, with mobile homes, shed-like constructions, regular homes, condos, and even commercial properties available. Each property has a unique page with several photos to view, plus all the relevant details you’d need, such as size, number of bedrooms, bathrooms, year of construction and a PDF of foreclosure property information. We were pleased that all this information was provided for free, as many sites will charge you to view photos and find out the details of a property.
It’s free to use the site, although if you do get involved in an auction, then you need to provide details of an account/card which has at least $2500 available as a holding fee, should you win the auction. If you lose, this fee is retracted. As such, you need to be sure you want to seriously bid, as winning (and then backing out) could result in big losses. It’s therefore important to understand what you’re getting into.
Thankfully the website provides a lot of information about the ins and outs of how it works, so we recommend taking a look at the FAQ to fully understand it. You can also talk to a member of the staff using live chat, or send an email. Additionally, there are community features so you can talk to other members, including an inbox for you to send and receive messages.
Whilst we were impressed by this level of service, there have been complaints online that there were unseen fees when you finally come to sign for a property. If you're not entirely sure what the costs might be at the final stages, we recommend seeking advice and clarifying the process with Auction.com's customer services team.
Properties are sold during live auctions, and these are scheduled for a very particular time on a certain day, so if you’re interested in a property, then you have to make sure you’re available and online at that time. There is a calendar available to help you keep a note of when these auctions are running.
Auction.com offers something a little different from most foreclosure sites: you bid on properties in real-time, against other members. Whilst this might not be for everyone (and acquiring a holding fee of $2500 isn’t possible for everyone), if you have an eye for a bargain and don’t mind bartering over it, you can pick up some real steals.
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