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Archive for the 'Foreclosures' Category


California Counties Top Foreclosure List

With Inland Empire foreclosures at pre-recession lows, Riverside County’s foreclosure rate dropped to No. 21 statewide in April. A total 1,403 mortgage default notices, auction sale notices and bank repossessions were recorded in April, meaning 1 in 566 households was in some stage of foreclosure, according to Irvine-based RealtyTrac.

Of those, 45 were from Palm Desert, according to data provided by the organization to Palm Desert Patch. In Palm Desert:

  • One out of every 538 households received a foreclosure filing in April
  • That number was down by about 25% from March 2013, and down 55% from last April.
  • In April 2012, 100 households had been in default.

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CoreLogic House Price Index Up 10.5%

CoreLogic today released its March CoreLogic HPI report. Home prices nationwide, including distressed sales, increased 10.5% on a year-over-year basis in March 2013 compared to March 2012. This change represents the biggest year-over-year increase since March 2006 and the 13th consecutive monthly increase in home prices nationally. On a month-over-month basis, including distressed sales, home prices increased by 1.9% in March 2013 compared to February 2013.

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Zombie Foreclosures

Hundreds of thousands of homes in the US are now labeled as “zombie” foreclosures. That’s when the owner of a foreclosed home leaves only to find out years later that he or she still legally owns the home and is on the hook for property taxes and other fees. Such cases occur in more than a third of foreclosures, industry figures show.

Although it’s hard to quantify exactly how many homes fall into the category, real estate information company RealtyTrac says that, in the first three months of the year, roughly 302,000 homes qualified as “zombie” properties because the owner has moved out, but the bank has not yet taken possession.

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5 Reasons Real Estate Prices Have Been Rising

Home prices rose by 0.1% in September from the prior month and by 3.6% from one year ago, the largest gain in six years, according to a report released Monday by Lender Processing Services.

Compared with one year ago, prices are up by 17.7% in Phoenix, the largest gain among the nation’s 40 largest metro areas. Other notable year-over-year increases include Detroit (11.7%), Las Vegas (11.5%), San Jose, Calif. (11.3%), San Francisco (10%), and Sacramento (8.3%).

Among the top 40 metros, only a handful have posted year-over-year declines, led by St. Louis, which was down by 4.1%. Bridgeport, Conn., was down by 2.3%, while Chicago (-0.5%) and Cincinnati (-0.1%) also posted declines.

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65% of Housing Markets Worse Than Four Years Ago

Sixty-five percent of U.S. housing markets are worse off today than they were four years ago according to the California-based real estate research firm RealtyTrac.

The results of the survey arrive the same day as the final presidential debate and just weeks before the general election.

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A Stunning Map of How Foreclosures Ate America

We’ve all heard that the housing bubble’s pop led to thousands of foreclosures, but its interactive maps like this that really show how prevalent the problem was — and still is. Part of a project on 30 election issues, the map below uses data from RealtyTrac to display foreclosure rates by county.

The darker the color is, the higher the rate of foreclosure. You can see what each color represents in the legend on the lower left.

By pressing play, you can see how many more dots show up on the map, indicating a higher prevalence of foreclosures. But perhaps more disturbing, the map displaying the most recent data in July 2012 doesn’t look much better than past maps: The crowded dots maintain the visual effect of a foreclosure epidemic.

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Real Estate Market Report

After nine consecutive months of appreciation, August was the first month where home values decreased by 0.1% to $152,100, according to Zillow.

2012 has seen a turnaround in the housing market with sustained appreciation that, at times, has been very strong.  As we progress through the latter half of this year, we expect home values to see more volatility characterized by months of home value declines mixed with months of appreciation.

Overall, the positive trend will hold as evidenced by home values being up by 1.7% in August 2012 on a year-over-year basis.  Rents continued to rise in August, appreciating by 0.2% from July to August.  On an annual basis, rents across the nation are up by 5.9%, indicating that demand, fueled by elevated foreclosure levels, is still outpacing investor-driven increases in rental property supply.

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Bottom Dwellers Waiting to Pounce

The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times both published articles in the past six weeks stating that the housing market has reached a bottom.  But hold on for just a minute… It seems that not everyone believes it.

Even Yale professor Robert Shiller, co-founder of the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index, admits to being a little bit skeptical.  In fact, he even told Fox Business last week that he’s not entirely convinced that a bottom has been reached yet.

“It’s possible, but I’m not confident. This is partly seasonal,” Shiller said regarding the recent rise in home prices that have been documented over the past few months.

Only one thing is certain when it comes to economics: there is no certainty as to when an economic cycle has bottomed out until it’s already past.  This is especially true in real estate — one of the biggest driving forces behind our national economy.

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Freddie Mac Needs 15 Years to Unload All REO Inventory

Sales of Freddie Mac REO homes took a dip in 3Q11 compared to the first two quarters of the year as nonperforming loans surged consistently over the previous quarter.

The number of repossessed homes plunged to 25,300, falling by 13.5% quarter-on-quarter (q-o-q) or approximately 30,000 units in 3Q11. REO sales also stumbled from 31,600 in 1Q11, the highest number recorded in the government sponsored enterprise’s (GSE) history.

In 3Q11, Freddie Mac thrust back 24,300 homes into its current inventory while disposing 25,300 REO properties at the same time. At the end of the quarter, the mortgage capital provider has already accumulated 60,000 REO properties on its books, down by 25 percent year-on-year (y-o-y) as a result of newly completed foreclosures.

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Mortgage Delinquencies Decline Across the U.S.

According to a recent survey released by the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA), the “latest delinquency numbers represent significant, across-the-board decreases in mortgage delinquency rates in the U.S.,” according to MBA’s chief economist, Jay Brinkmann[1]. In fact, total delinquencies (not including homes already in foreclosure) are at the lowest levels since the end of 2008, and mortgages with one payment past due alone are at their lowest level since 2007, which MBA marks as the “very beginning of the recession.”

Perhaps even more more promising: at the beginning of 2010 90-day-or-more delinquencies were at an all time high at the beginning of 2010 but have now fallen 28 percent, and 48 of the 50 states experienced a drop in this area.

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Foreclosure Timeline

Novice short sale and other real estate investors are often confused by the entire process; it’s not your fault! Foreclosure has never been simple but with the current backlog and other pressures, it’s become worse than ever.

Here to help is an easy to read foreclosure process timeline. It will help novice investors understand the different methods used to purchase short sale, pre-foreclosures and foreclosed properties.

  1. First month missed payment. This counts as day one for the bank but notice, the homeowner had 30 days just like normal to come up with a payment. They will always remain 30 days ahead of the bank schedule.
  2. Second missed mortgage payment…day 30 for the bank.
  3. Third missed mortgage payment…day 60 for the bank. The loan is now seriously delinquent.
  4. Read more »

Short Sales: Fact vs. Fiction

Looking for big profits in short sales? An internet search for the phrase “investing in short sales” brings up tens of thousands of hits, many of which offer strategies and tricks to make a killing on the rising number of short sales in the U.S. These properties are sometimes viewed as easy money because the seller is in distress. But this is not necessarily the case.

The concept behind a short sale is this: a homeowner is unable to continue making mortgage payments; however, the outstanding mortgage on the property is higher than the market value of the house (i.e. “upside-down”). The homeowner makes a deal with the lender to sell the property at market value, and the lender eats the loss.

But are short sales really the money-making scheme that many believe them to be?

Not that it’s impossible to get good deals – many investors manage to buy short sales at a discount – but investors should be aware that negotiating a short sale is no walk in the park.

“Our biggest challenge [with short sales] is getting the banks to recognize that the property is not worth what they think it is. When we submit offers, and we think it’s a fair offer, and we fight with the banks on behalf of…the buyer, it’s very difficult to get them to meet us halfway at times,” says Mia Lutz, president of Say No To The Bank, a community counseling organization that works with foreclosure buyers and sellers.

Time frame can also be a major impediment for looking to purchase short sale properties. Short sales can take anywhere from 30 days to six months from contract to closing, and the deal can fall apart at any time.

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The Housing Market is About to Get Even More Oversupplied

While both the media and stock investors believe that housing has bottomed, they are unaware of the massive supply of homes that are already in the foreclosure process that will certainly drive home prices down even further when they are sold. We have been projecting a “W” shaped recovery for some time, and we are becoming even more convinced that we are right. The shape of the second leg down is almost completely dependent on the level of government intervention that will take place.

For a number of reasons, banks have not been aggressively taking title to homes and selling them, which has resulted in very few distressed sales in comparison to the actual level of distress in the market. This delay in REO sales, along with historically low mortgage rates and an $8,000 tax credit, has helped to stabilize the housing market – temporarily.

It is very clear that price stabilization is temporary unless something is done. Here are some facts to help project what housing will be like in 2010:

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Foreclosures Hit All-Time High!

Just when you thought foreclosure filings were stabilizing, they hit another all-time high with almost 938,000 homeowners filing in the third quarter, according to Realty Trac.  This is a 5% increase from the previous quarter.

Six states account for 62% of the nations foreclosures:
California, Florida, Arizona, Nevada, Illinois and Michigan accounted for 62 percent of the nation’s total foreclosure activity in the third quarter.  That accounts for 579,541 properties receiving foreclosure filings in the six states combined.

Although California’s foreclosure activity decreased almost 2% from Q2 there were still 250,054 properties that received a foreclosure filing.   That was a 10% drop in default notices but a 4% increase in scheduled auctions and 12% increase in REOs.

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Foreclosures and Bank Profits

A lot has gone right for the banks lately. Changes to accounting rules have allowed them enough breathing room to operate. Mortgage loan modifications have brought in fees. And trading activities have even helped some banks to boost profits.

Still, I believe there’s another banking shoe to drop.

Foreclosure sales are the majority of home sales these days. And when a bank sells a foreclosed home, it is a realized loss. That’s as opposed to a non-performing loan or a foreclosed home that has yet to be sold, which can be counted as an asset.

Further exacerbating this is that banks are not realizing as much profit on the sales of foreclosed homes as they’re all flooding the market with them and thus driving down prices.

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