Friday, September 14, 2007

Over-bidding in Court: What NOT to do

In order to bid in court, a buyer must present a cashier's check for at least 10% of the opening bid amount and it is to be made payable to the Estate, Conservatorship or Trust. If a buyer does not have this, they cannot attempt to purchase the property. So if you set your dreams on having that particular property you better come to court and be prepared.

The other day we were having a sale in court and up walks this lovely young couple, Fred and Cindy. Both dressed in their best “Sunday” clothes and holding hands, they came up to us and said they were here to bid on the house. They started to tell us how excited they were since they had been looking for a house for over a year. They had gotten priced out of the market so they really could only afford houses that need some updating and work. The house they came to purchase was a cute as a button little Spanish casita in need of everything. Their kind eyes told us how they started drawing up plans and Cindy was particularly in love with the sun-filled yard.

When the attorney arrived and asked to verify their funds, Fred pulled out a personal check from his back pocket. The check was written payable to the Estate, however it was only for 5% of the opening bid. The attorney had to tell the couple that they could not buy this property because A) the check needed to be for 10% of the opening bid and B) the check needed to be a cashier's check.

At that same moment, an investor all in black with sunglasses on top of his head presents a check for exactly 10% of the opening bid, made payable to the Estate, and in the form of a cashier's check.

Fred and Cindy were devastated. As we walked through the double doors into the court room, we looked over our shoulder and saw them walk slowly away.

So be prepared. Don’t let a silly mistake take away the home of your dreams or a great opportunity.

To find out more how the over-bid process works in Court, please contact The Sanborn Team at 310-777-2858 or visit us on the web at