Monday, August 17, 2009

Three States Hold 50% of U.S. Foreclosures

3 states account for more than half of July 2009 foreclosuresForeclosure-tracker RealtyTrac reports that the number of foreclosures nationwide rose 7 percent on a month-to-month basis last month.

However, 3 states dominated the foreclosure list, tallying more foreclosures between them than the rest of the country combined.

  • California : 30.0 percent

  • Florida : 15.7 percent

  • Arizona : 5.4 percent

On a per-household basis, the states ranked 2, 3 and 4. Only Nevada's foreclosure rate was higher.

Now, we point out these statistics for two reasons.

The first is to remind you that foreclosures can be highly local. For all of the foreclosure-related stories that run in the papers and on TV, defaults make a much larger impact on home values in some areas versus others. In Pennsylvania for example, there are only 1 foreclosure for every 1030 housing units as opposed to New Jersey where there is one foreclosure for every 541 housing units, or the national average of one foreclosure for every 355 household units.

And, second -- foreclosures can represent a terrific buying opportunity. Not every foreclosed home is in pristine condition, but there is a plethora of affordable housing out there, suitable for first-time buyer, move-up buyers and investors, too. By buying a home after the foreclosure sale, all liens and encumbrances are removed, and the buyer will have title as clear and pristine as in any other type of sale. Title Insurance is still needed for the buyer's protection, but is normally provided at settlement.

Furthermore, as banks get better at disposing of foreclosed homes, the process of buying one isn't as challenging as it was, say, 12 months ago.

As part of its research, catalogs a lot of foreclosed homes and lists them online. However, you may find it better to start your search with a local real estate agent that knows the foreclosure market.

So long as buying foreclosures is a high-touch process -- and it is a high-touch process -- you may want to have a human face and agent to guide you through it. To search for foreclosure properties , just check the Century 21 Advantage Gold Web site.

The complete RealtyTrac report is available online.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]