I have mixed feelings about covering foreclosed homes for sale. There have been several of them in Silver Spring over the last few months but fewer, it seems, than in NOVA. It is still rare in Bethesda and Chevy Chase. It must be very sad for the former owners. At the same time, someone is going to buy these houses and they can be great deals if you can wait out the long bank process.
The Bethesda house below is at 5810 AUGUSTA LN, just one block from Massachusetts Ave, in Glen Mar Park, close to the Glen Echo Fire Station. It is listed at $630,900. I found it through Redfin, which has just added a foreclosures filtering capability to its search engine (a sign of the times.)
The house has 3 bedrooms and 2 baths. In late 2005 it sold for $710,000. Today, a 3-bedroom house for less than $700,000 in this zip code (20816) is rare. In this particular neighborhood – just 2 minutes by car from the DC line - it is almost unseen. I have not visited the house inside. From the outside it looks like some general love and care is needed (like painting the trim) but nothing major appears out of order. It is on a very nice, quiet street filled with well-taken-care-of homes.
If you are interested in buying foreclosed properties, I strongly suggest you do your homework first – both on the house and the process. I understand it can takes weeks for a bank to respond to offers, and I have heard about problems with title clearance. If you want to work with Redfin, they can only represent you if the bank has hired a real estate broker to sell the property and it is listed on a broker site as well as any foreclosure sites. Read more about why, if you are interested. If you negotiate directly with the bank, Redfin has a few words of wisdom about that too. Finally, the Washington Post and many web sites have articles on the purchase of foreclosed homes. Don’t forget to check the online discussions too. Do your research with sources you trust.
Some Foreclosure Sales in Silver Spring (Inside the Beltway)
133 KINSMAN CIRCLE - $324,900, 3 bed/3.5 bath colonial townhouse in Northwood Park View.
917 PATTON DR - $379,000, 3 bed/2.5 bath rambler in Montgomery Knolls.
7911 FENTON ST - $398,900, 3 bed/1 bath colonial needing work, in Blair close to downtown Silver Spring.
9940 MOSS AVE - $405,000, 5 bed/2.5 bath brick cape cod in popular Indian Spring Park. All bedrooms are on the main and upper floors.
712 BAYFIELD ST - $348,000. 5 bed/3 bath brick Cape Cod in the Rolling Terrace neighborhood. Only one of the bedrooms is in the basement, two are on the main floor, two upstairs.