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Tours take buyers to foreclosed Long Island homes

In Politics on mayo 27, 2008 at 4:56 pm

By Eugenio A. Álvarez-Cascos

Source: Reuters
   As foreclosed properties stack up in up-market areas of Long Island, New York, one company is capitalizing by taking potential buyers around the empty homes.

   Foreclosure tours have sprung up around the United States as more overextended borrowers fail to make monthly payments.

   U.S. home foreclosure filings jumped 23 percent in the first quarter from the prior quarter, according to real estate data firm RealtyTrac.

   One way to sell properties is to make life easier for potential buyers by ferrying them around in a tour bus. That’s hard for people who had properties foreclosed, David Farrell, director of tourism of the Long Island Foreclosure Tours told Reuters TV, but banks need to get the assets off their books.

   “People have been evicted, it’s a terrible thing,” he said. “But for the most part people have been out of their homes for six months, a year. The people who lost, lost a long time ago. Banks lost, homeowners lost. Now what we have are two people who can win.”

   Banks benefit from getting homes off their books and buyers can purchase homes at a substantially reduced rate, he said.

   Long Island Foreclosure Tours, a division of Foreclosure Tours International, took three buses of prospective buyers to about 10 homes each on Saturday.

   “This is devastating to see how these beautiful houses, and up and coming neighborhoods can be so dilapidated, so gutted,” said prospective buyer Cathy Germaine from Franklin Square, Long Island, who was on one of the tours.

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