Foreclosures Make Up 29% Of All Georgia Home Sales
Although the foreclosure controversies of recent months, including allegations of improper and illegal handling of home foreclosure documents, may have slowed down the foreclosure process for many homeowners in default, experts warn that it may also slow the housing market, preventing the recovery that it so sorely needs. “A quick but responsible resolution to that issue would be ideal to help the market continue to properly clear out foreclosure inventory,” said James J. Saccacio of RealtyTrac, “and get distressed properties into the hands of qualified buyers and investors who will likely add value to those properties and the neighborhoods they are in.”
According to recently released numbers, foreclosed home sales had already begun to decline before the allegations against mortgage lenders. In the third quarter of 2010, 188,748 homes in some stage of foreclosure were sold to third parties, accounting for one-fourth of all residential home sales in the United States. While this seems like a substantial number, it represents a 25 percent decline in foreclosure sales from the previous quarter, and a 31 percent drop from sales in the third quarter of 2009.
While the number of foreclosed homes dropped, so did their average prices. In the third quarter, the average property in some stage of foreclosure sold for 32 percent less than homes that were not in foreclosure. This discount amount has increased from the previous quarter’s 26 percent difference. In Georgia, the difference is larger: foreclosed homes are sold for over 40 percent less than non-foreclosed homes.
In many states, foreclosure sales represented over one-fourth of the state’s home sales during the third quarter. Georgia is also on par with this trend: foreclosures accounted for 29 percent of all home sales in recent months.
Source: Building Online News, “Foreclosure Homes Account for 25 Percent of All Q3 2010 Residential Sales”, 6 December 2010