Foreclosure process is sequential and the bidding aspect of it falls under the third stage, and 90 days after the notice of default is served and the borrower has not cured the default. The lender or their representative sets an auction date for the property commonly called the Trustee Sale or foreclosure sale. The Notice of Trustee Sale recorded with the County Recorder’s Office is served to the homeowner, posted on the property door and published on local newspaper so as to notify as many people as possible of the auction date and venue which can either in the courthouse, trustee office or the property site.

Types of foreclosure bids

Absolute bid, where the property is sold to the highest bidder and no attention is given to the amount bid.

Reserve bid, the property is sold in reference to a predetermined minimum bid which is set by the lender and is usually a reflection of the outstanding debt owed to them.

Confirmation bid, the highest bidder acquires the property after it’s after obtaining the mortgagee’s approval or rather confirmation.

Sealed bid, the bids are passed on to the auctioneer in envelopes, from where the bidder who had hit the creditor’s minimum gets to participate in the oral absolute auction.

Other key items of foreclosure bidding

Terms of sale

The responsibilities of the buyer are advertised before the auction date and are revisited by the trustee at the commencement of the sale or posted at the venue of the sale; failure to observe the whole list of terms may lead to the forfeiture of your deposit as well as assumption of other responsibilities such as re-sell expenses or any deficiency incurred

The state of the property

Is it poor, excellent or there between? It is a key item because foreclosed property are sold “as is” therefore the mortgage and/or owner are neither responsible for any repairs nor can they can make any warranties. If you are a real estate investor interested in buying homes to renovate and resale for a profit the auctions are best places to buy.

Inspection of the property

In order to get a chance to inspect the property, you need to get early at the auction site because inspection is given between 30-60 minutes before the scheduled time of start for the auction. This is so since the trustee has access to the before the date of trustee sale.


For you to be registered as a bidder or to qualify to bid for the property at the auction, you will need to first give your personal details (names, addresses), and make a deposit payment either in cash or inform a check which is usually $5000 or a percentage of the property’s purchase price or pre-approval of your choosing.


The successful bidder who is more often than not the highest bidder at the auction is responsible for expenses related to property ownership; these expenses include property taxes, utility cost (water electricity etc), insurance among other effective from the date of sale or settlement.