cubs..there are many pro's and cons...be sure to study your states laws of grace period ,contamination responsibility,title ins. etc. is property part of an estate?( you might be dealing with probate court)....I suggest a serious talk with experienced realtor in your area...Marty mentioned inspections...plumbing,elec,septic system(if one), water well, do they meet code??
These are forclosure tax properties. You cannot enter unless the occupant agrees or the house is unlocked as far as i know. But as previously said prices are Out of this world currently. So no inspections or anything.
Need to know a little about the person that is living or has lived there. If there is a good chance they will pick up the back taxes it is easy money with the high interest. If there is a mortgage on the property, they will pick up the taxes just before the auction. If they don't they are not interested in it any more so you could end up with the property. It's a gamble, win some loose some. Friend who is also my banker bought a tax sale house in town that looked good on the outside. After he got found out the inside was damaged beyond repair bu humans and termites. He took his loss and let it go back to the City who tore it down. City got it because next tax sale as no one bid on it.
I bought my house as a bank foreclosure in 2008. The prior owner had moved out on May/June of 2007, paid off the estimated water bill, and asked for the water to be turned off. Turns out the actual water bill was more than the estimate, by less than a buck - so the city wouldn't turn off the water. Several late payment fees and a disconnect fee later, the city did actually turn off the water, I think it was in December of 2007. The BANK however, didn't get anybody in there to winterize the house until MARCH of 2008. Most of the piping was in PVC, I live in Iowa, got any guesses what happened to the plumbing?
I knew about the plumbing when I bought the house, that's why I counter-offered a substantially lower amount to the bank. I replaced the plumbing and went to the city to get the water turned back on, this was right before Labor Day. Now remember that the water hadn't been on since I bought the house, I hadn't used a drop, I was told that I had a $184 water bill that had to be paid before the water would be turned back on. As calmly as I could, I asked the nice person how it was possible that I had a water bill, since I only bought the house in June and the water had been turned off all that time? I was told that in this town the water bill goes with the address, not the owner. My realtor and I sent this bill to the bank that I bought the house from since this SHOULD be their responsibility, that was 13-1/2 years ago - still waiting for that check.
The point of this rant is that you can get a HELLUVA deal with a foreclosure, I got a big drafty old house with LOTs of character that I love. But there's also things that can come out of the blue to bite you in the butt. DO NOT try to do this on a shoe-string budget thinking you'll flip it and make a butt-load of money.