Foreclosure Numbers In 2011 Leveling Off

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It is no secret that from 2005 to 2009 we moved from a seller’s to a buyer’s market.

Supply and demand market forces have caused home prices in the Rim Country to decline and there are still some extraordinary values for buyers.

The challenge that today’s sellers are facing is many buyers want more than a good value and are looking for a steal.

A lot of inquiries coming into real estate offices are for foreclosures, bank owned properties and short sales, however, the bargain hunters may start to have a harder time based on the statistics presented below.

Fortune Magazine recently published an article where they cited Mike Castleman, a Texas rancher’s prediction that the housing market will boom faster than predicted by some economists.

Castleman has been tracking the real estate market for years and he believes that there may even be a housing shortage in some parts due to the lack of new construction and pent up demand.

Below are some encouraging statistics regarding trustee sales in Gila County supplied by Larry Huffer, chief appraiser at the Gila County Assessor’s Office.

The good news is that the statistics would indicate that we have climbed the mountain of foreclosures and are coming down the other side.

The statistics also indicate that in normal times we averaged about 220 notices of trustee sales in Gila County per year.

In 2008, that number climbed to 316 and there was a dramatic increase in 2009 to 600 trustee sales.

It appears in 2010 the area flattened out to the same level seen in 2009 with 614 notices.

However, unless the first three months of this year were an aberration, there is more good news with the number of monthly notices beginning to decline.

The first quarter of 2010 saw 160 foreclosure notices compared to 123 in the first quarter of 2011.

This is a drop of 23 percent, which may indicate that we are starting to see a recovery. We will monitor the second quarter to see if this trend continues.

Real estate is a local business and should not be lumped into one category for analysis.

For example, people understand the foreclosure/trustee sale/short sale impact to the housing market in Scottsdale is dramatically less than in Buckeye or Maricopa.

The same applies to the Rim Country versus Maricopa County as a whole.

Be aware that the nightly news statistics on foreclosures are meaningless to local markets.

Ray Pugel is a designated broker for Coldwell Banker Bishop Realty. Contact him at (928) 474-2216.

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