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The Ever-Changing Foreclosure Market

By Alicia Murphy | June 1, 2012
  • Since the financial bubble burst foreclosed properties have become a very real part of the housing market. At one time their numbers were so few that they weren’t even considered applicable as a comparable listing or sale on an appraisal, however even that has changed. So what other changes have recently taken place in the ever-changing foreclosure market?

    Foreclosure market

    Buyer Interest Increasing

    In the past buyers were wary of foreclosed properties. Many were in disrepair and offered at a price close to market value, making them a poor choice for owner-occupant buyers who could purchase a comparable home with less needed repairs for just a little more money. In the past couple of years however as foreclosures have become more prevalent in the market buyers are beginning to see the fruits of buying a repossessed home. According to a National Association of REALTORS® survey buyer interest in foreclosures has increased by 159% since last year, with 64.9% of today’s buyers stating that they would likely purchase a foreclosed property.

    Decrease in Inventory

    Many Americans would be surprised to learn that the foreclosure inventory available on the market has decreased by 34% in the last year. And it’s no wonder: one look at a major news source in a seven day period will surely yield at least one story about the doom-and-gloom of the real estate industry and the economy as a whole. In fact, according to the aforementioned National Association of REALTORS® 49% of people still feel that the rate of foreclosures in their market has remained unchanged since last year.

    Who’s To Blame?

    Home ownership is a personal thing for people. After all, that’s your home, your castle, etc. So it’s no surprise that when it comes to the touchy subject of people losing their homes the finger-pointing and blame game is rampantly at play. Of those surveyed most Americans blame lenders, followed by the economy and in a close third the government for the current foreclosure rates.

    Foreclosed properties, while decreasing in numbers, appear to be here to stay as a fixture in the housing market for some time to come. Fortunately owner-occupant buyers seem to be coming around to the advantages of purchasing one of these properties, which aids in community stabilization. And as interest rates remain at historic lows these buyers have little to lose in making a savvy foreclosure purchase.

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