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Friday, June 6, 2008

Foreclosures still high

In today's Oakland Press, Charles Crumm reported that foreclosures were higher again last month than the same month a year before - up 35.4% to 792 in May, 2008, as compared to only (a relative term don't you think?) 585 last May. According to Crumm, we are on apace to set a new record of 10,000 foreclosures for the year in Oakland County. Whoopee!

We are averaging 823 foreclosures a month, so far this year, according to Crumm. The good news (if there is any in all of this) is that the May total was lower than the April high for the year (so far) of 958 foreclosures.

All of this of course keeps pressure on prices in the area. For buyers that's good new, I guess; since it keeps all prices artificially low. For sellers it's just another thing that they have to deal with - competing with foreclosed homes.

At a national level, the Mortgage Bankers Association reported that 447,723 homes fell into foreclosure during the first three months of the year. As we reported here yesterday, this is all part of the larger national economic news. I've seen reports that state that housing is the reason for the current recession and others that say that the current recession is the reason for the housing crisis (as a part of the overall credit crunch).

Whichever view of things is more correct, the fact remains that our local real estate market will continue to be driven by the impact of foreclosures. I have yet to see any forecasters saying that we've definitely bottomed out and are headed back to a more "normal" market. Still, home are selling - I sold two this week (or at least I wrote accepted offers - we'll wait and see if they actually "sell") and neither one was a foreclosure.

Most of my buyers are still asking to look first at foreclosures; but, when they see some of them and the condition that many are in, they go back to looking at regular homes that don't need as much work. That's one edge that regular sellers can have in the market - condition.

So, it is what it is and we must all go on with life and trying to make a living. call me. I'll show you foreclosures all day long, or we can go look at houses that you can move right into.

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