Help with Vermont foreclosure auctions

3 Replies


I'm a new poster or at least it's been a few years since I have been active. I live in Vermont and the foreclosure auctions are not well attended which you would think would bring some opportunity. I have a few questions if someone could help out:

1) If I can't get in a property then how do I account for the two big unkowns of the well and septic systems?  You could pay 30- 40 grand if you needed a new system.

2) Since we don't have many "cookie cutter " communities how can I REALLY arrive at value if there are not many similar properties? Does anyone know if the lawyer handling the foreclosure paperwork would have a file with an appraisal of the property ? That is how it worked in Connecticut...I could ask to see the file and discover the appraised value that the bank was working from.

3) How do I find a realtor or agent that could run "comps" for me without tipping them off to the actual foreclosure sale ? It seems many real estate agents are also investors in how can I trust them that they won't bid themselves or pass along the info to a friend or relative ? I have found that many don't look at the legal ads and don't even know about these sales...I'd like to keep it that way.

Lots of challenges but I'm hoping the Biggerpockets community can give me some advice.

Thank you


Hey Bruce. I’m a realtor in Vermont but not an investor... yet! Yes, comps are hard in Vermont sometimes. Anything on auction or foreclosure is a good deal regardless. Any realtor will have access to at least some of the info about assessed value etc.

If you don’t trust your realtor, you shouldn’t be working with them. Find someone you trust. Look me up, Martha Nowlan with Keller Williams. I’d be happy to connect about how I might be able to help. I love working with investors!

@Bruce M.   Hi Bruce - for me, I try to stick with properties in towns, even smaller ones.  That way you should have town water and sewer service, and comps are easier.  I generally buy, rehab, and then rent out.  Being in town, it's always easier to rent the places out.

Hepe that helps!

- Tom

I bought many bank reo's from and a couple years ago. If you buy at least 5 from, you might make their VIP list and they will waive posting a deposit with every property you are bidding on. Really helpful if you are bidding on 5-10 properties simultaneously.

Drawback is you have to pay cash for your purchases and mostly sight unseen. I never bought properties at the foreclosure auctions as usually the banks will bid the amount that covers their loan and costs. 

Sometimes I'd be patient to buy a property and save a lot of money. Also be careful as there is shill bidding by the auction site allowed that is just below the reserve so if you bid, you will hit the reserve, so do your home work and stick to your price. They will eventually lower their price when it doesn't sell.

One property took me 9 months to buy... The bank foreclosed on the house for $111k. By the time I bought it, they probably had at least $135k into it. My 1st bid was $91k but the reserve wasn't met. They kept lowering the reserve and I kept lowering my max bid eventually they accepted my bid of $29k! LOL! This is why I don't bother going to the live foreclosure sales.