Finding Houses to Buy and Owners to Sell — Strategy #2

When you are looking for properties to buy and owners that are ready to sell, the internet is your number 1 detective tool even when you are looking for local properties. Your second most valuable tool in this search for houses to buy and owners ready to see, is your phone. I’m sure you use these everyday already, but just in case you have not considered all they can do for you, I’ll run through my list here.

For Sale By Owner

First search Craigslist ads (for example,,, local online newspapers, and even real estate sites like where you can find properties offered by owners. You can wing it too by typing into your browser window, every combination of key words with locations that you can think of related to houses that might need work and owners that might be ready to sell like with a location:

  • Fixer upper housing
  • houses for sale
  • must sell house
  • house for sale that needs work
  • vacant house for sale
  • real estate by owner
  • seller financing
  • FSBO (for sale by owner)
  • motivated seller


Properties Being Sold for Taxes

You might also want to look at government and auction websites where you might find houses for sale and motivated sellers. Some of these include:

 Probate Properties

Probate properties for sale are another possible place to find a deal. Probate properties are owned by the estate of a deceased homeowner and are often sold below market value to property investors and potential homebuyers. The process of purchasing these properties can take anywhere from 6 month to several years.

You can find these properties from a real estate agent that might be hired by the estate executor to disperse the property of the deceased. You can also find them with probate lawyers. You can also contact the local court directly and ask for a list of all probate cases filed within the previous six months. There is probably an online docket you can check as well (for example, Contact the attorney for the estate or the executor. This information should be on the docket sheet maintained by the court.

Contact each representative directly and ask for information on the status of the property, how they are handling the sale, and whether an asking price has been established. If the executor is motivated to sell, they may negotiate with you directly if the court has already approved the asking price.

Some estate properties sell at public auctions which are advertised. These however often sell at or above the market value of the property.

If you make an offer, you will have to put 10% down and be aware the court will have to approve the selling price. For more information about buying probate properties see

After you have accumulated a list of houses, you need to start calling and setting up appointments to visit the property and discuss the purchase. Don’t forget to request an inspection. When you have a price, give me a call for a loan. You can e-mail too.

Pat St. Cin


Austin, Texas


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s