News Archives

Foreclosures Rise in May… Is This the Start of a Comeback?

Foreclosures RisingSouthern Washington. Western Pennsylvania. Southwest Florida. The entire state of Nevada. All of these locations — and many more, for that matter — are in the news today as evidence that foreclosures are coming back after a multi-year decline. According to Businessweek:

Lenders took back 38,946 homes, up from 34,997 in April, according to Irvine, California-based data firm RealtyTrac, which tracks notices of default, auction and seizures. Thirty-three states had increases in the number of homes repossessed, RealtyTrac said in a report today.

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Bull or Bear? The Housing Market Debate Continues

Bull vs. Bear

Today’s Wall Street Journal features an interesting article exploring the same question we’ve asked ourselves here time and again: How strong is the housing market really? The Journal offers differing views from housing bulls and bears, both starting from the obvious reality that the market is hot, but not seeing eye-to-eye on whether it’s especially strong:

The bull case says the housing market is in the early stages of a rebound that should last several years because the U.S. hasn’t built enough housing to support the country’s growth. The recession and the foreclosure crisis led to a sharp slump in new-home construction and in household formation. But the population didn’t stop growing. Instead, households simply doubled up or moved in with family.

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Foreclosures Down, But Watch For ‘Shadow Inventory’

HUD homes shadow inventory

Most industry observers know that the last year has seen foreclosures nationwide drop considerably from their peaks three or four years ago. But a glimpse past those numbers reveals another truth as well: “Shadow inventory,” the 1.7 million accounts currently delinquent by 90 days or more. Per a new report out of Washington (via Reuters):

“Not only are current REO inventory levels elevated … they may rise over the next several years depending on the number of shadow inventory properties that are ultimately foreclosed on,” the report stated.

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The Seller’s Market, By the Numbers

sellers marketConsider the source, but Century 21 came out with results of a study detailing what we’ve all known for a while: With inventory at staggering lows, a sellers market has blossomed nationwide. A sampling of the findings, via CNNMoney:

With fewer homes for sale and more buyers coming onto the market, sellers are less willing to negotiate on price like they were during the housing bust. According to the survey, 42% of the people shopping for homes have placed offers in the past six months, yet only 11% of the bids were accepted.

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New Housing Bubble? What New Housing Bubble?

bubbleHere’s an interesting read about the prospects of a new real estate/housing bubble, an idea that’s making the media rounds but doesn’t withstand closer scrutiny:

First, prices, as measured by Case-Shiller, are still down 27 percent from their peak seven years ago. But Case-Shiller calculates nominal prices, not real ones. And the consumer price index (inflation) is up 15 percent since 2006. So real house prices are about 37 percent below 2006 levels and are just now returning to where they were 13 years ago. […]

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