First Look Program

First Look is the cornerstone of NCST's Property Acquisition Program.We have transferred more than 10,000 First Look properties to our local housing providers.

First Look provides an opportunity for local housing providers focused on neighborhood stabilization to purchase foreclosed and abandoned properties prior to the properties being marketed to investors or other buyers. NCST also helps the housing providers purchase strategically important properties at a discounted price.

Local housing providers have saved more than $134 million to-date by buying their properties at a discount through NCST's First Look program. These savings are most often passed forward to their home buyers.


First Look has grown from a pilot program in Minneapolis and Saint Paul, to a national program linking the nation's most prominent financial institutions to local housing providers in 48 states, covering 3,000 cities and nearly 4,000 zip codes.

Early leaders in the First Look program included Bank of America, Citi, Chase, and Freddie Mac, all who joined NCST to ensure that REO inventory was made available to communities and housing-focused organizations to promote neighborhood revitalization.

Why First Look?

First Look continues to serve as a critical tool for municipalities and local housing providers as it saves these organizations valuable time and resources. The program also allows financial institutions to process a foreclosure more quickly and at less expense than a traditional sale, and advances their commitment to community revitalization. A quicker sale lessens the risk of potential vandalism and property value deterioration for both the community and the financial institutions.

First Look Process

NCST has a dedicated team of Senior Asset Managers who are involved in every transaction, providing guidance to the housing providers and ensuring that the process works efficiently.

Participating financial institutions provide eligible property lists to NCST daily. The lists are uploaded to REOMatch, and include homes in the appropriate income range and neighborhoods for NCST housing providers.

The housing providers have a set time frame to review and inspect the properties, develop a rehabilitation plan, conduct a valuation, and indicate to the seller that they will pursue the acquisition of the home. If there is no housing provider interested in a property, the financial institutions pursue conventional marketing methods.

Success Stories

H.I.P. - Housing Initiative Partnership - 2

Suitland, MD
This property was a haven for drug activity with a notorious reputation in the neighborhood. There was little that the active Neighborhood Watch could do but constantly call the police. During the initial property inspection, a police officer even stopped HIP staff to ask why they were at the site. The scope of renovation was a gut rehab. Everything in the house was removed and replaced with the exception of the hardwood floors.