This recent article, highlighted in REALTOR®Mag, discusses some of the horrible things we agents get to see when a house is foreclosed on. I recently had the pleasure of showing several bank-owned homes and got to see a few of these things all in the same day!
I often see bank-owned homes with stains on the carpet, but I’m not just talking about normal stains. Sometimes it looks as if the upset home owner has literally emptied the contants of their refrigerator onto the floor! Either that, or they “forgot” to let the dog outside for several days or let the children paint the floor with nail polish.
Of the 5 houses I showed this weekend, 2 of them had no kitchen sink. It is very common that people take their appliances with them, or sell them, when they are about to lose their house. One of those took it a step further… they had no KITCHEN at all! All of the cabinets had been removed, along with the appliances and sink.
One of the houses looked as if it had been broken into, there were 2 windows on the back of the house that were broken and covered with wood. This is another risk with vacant houses, squatters or people who think it would make a fun party palace. Another had spraypaint on the cabinets (hey- at least it had cabinets!) but the rest of the main level had been repainted… made me wonder what else had been spraypainted?
The worst I think I have ever seen was a home that had fleas. It was a few months ago, and despite the 4 bug bombs we found in the dining and living room, we still saw fleas everywhere! The house smelled horrible of pet “odors”, and had holes punched in the drywall by some angry homeowner. I wouldn’t leave the front entryway and I was still horribly disgusted by the house!
On more than one occasion I found that the house had no more copper pipes in it, they had ripped the copper right out of the walls (or crawl space in one home). It’s kind of a downer when the listing agent calls you to say that they suspect that the copper plumbing has been removed from the crawl space of the house your buyer likes.
When you are looking at foreclosures, or bank-owned homes, they come in all varieties. Some are actually quite nice or just need a little bit of paint. Others are in very sad shape, and you never quite know what you’re going to get. (Oh hey- foreclosures are like a box of chocolates– maybe I should re-title this post?)