How to Buy Foreclosed Homes in Oregon

How to Buy Foreclosed Homes in Oregon
••• Oregon state contour with Capital City against blurred USA flag image by Stasys Eidiejus from <a href=''></a>

The foreclosure process in Oregon takes about 180 days. The state of Oregon uses both judicial and nonjudicial means for carrying out foreclosures. Judicial foreclosure involves the filing of a lawsuit, whereas nonjudicial foreclosure allows the lender to reclaim a property due to the power of sale clause that exists in the mortgage. The three counties with the highest number of foreclosures in Oregon are Multnomah, Deschutes and Washington.

Sixty-three percent of foreclosures in Oregon are sold at auction. Even though foreclosures can be purchased at a lower price than market value, lenders will seek to get as much money as possible for a property. RealtyTrac reports that the price difference between resale properties and foreclosed properties is $47,757.

Properties at Auction

Purchase a newspaper in the county in which you desire to buy property. A notice of sale for a property will run once a week for four weeks. The last notice runs at least 20 days prior to the sale of the property. A notice of sale will also be posted at the local county courthouse. Visit the county courthouse and view the list of foreclosed properties. Identify the property you are interested in. The notice of sale will include the property address. Drive by the property of interest and note the condition of the property.

Call your lender and set up a time to meet. Explain that you want to purchase a property at auction. Provide documentation requested by your lender. Make arrangements to have cash available the day you bid at auction. Money is due at the time of the auction, and payment must be made in full and with cash.

Attend the auction. Auctions are held between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. at the location stated on the notice. Determine how high you will bid for a property. Have cash in hand to purchase the property should you be the highest bidder. Properties are transferred within 10 days.

Bank-Owned Properties

Contact your local bank in the city or town where you want to buy property. Ask whether they have any properties available for purchase. Pick up a list of the properties from the bank. Review the list and identify properties that interest you.

Call your local real estate agent. If you do not have a real estate agent, then contact your local real estate company of choice and speak with the agent on call. Tell the agent you are interested in buying bank-owned properties. Often banks list foreclosed properties with agents to help them sell. Ask your agent to do a search for bank-owned properties. Define the location you desire and the specific features of the property--for example, a specific ZIP code or number of bedrooms. Ask your agent to e-mail you a link to view the results of the search.

Review the properties. Select the properties that interest you. Compare the properties from the bank list and your real estate agent's search. Call your agent and set up a time to view the properties you have selected.

Set up a meeting with your lender. Explain that you would like to buy bank-owned properties. Provide the documentation your lender requires. Ask your lender for a pre-approval letter. The letter will identify you as a qualified buyer. Banks often accept multiple offers for a property and select the highest and best offer. The bank will want to know whether you qualify for the property for which you write a contract.

Meet with your real estate agent and write an offer for the property on which you have decided to bid. Present your highest and best offer first. Banks will rarely enter into negotiations. They are looking for the highest offer with the best terms. Submit your pre-approval letter with your contract.


  • Know what you can afford prior to bidding or making an offer.

    Visit an auction and become familiar with the process prior to bidding.


  • Foreclosed properties are sold as-is, and it is up to you to know the condition of the property.