As Foreclosures Ease, The Market Benefits

RecoveryWe have watched as inventory decreases and prices rise both locally and nationally. This is due in part to a steady decline in foreclosures entering the market. In March the number of foreclosure filings fell 21% from a year earlier and repossessions were at the lowest number we have experienced in five and a half years. Let’s take a closer look at all of the factors in play that are helping ease the numbers.

Stronger guidelines for processing short sales have been put into play for some loans helping the process move along more quickly. As buyers see that short sales are not taking as long they are more interested in these listings resulting in more of them being sold instead of moving into foreclosure.

Banks are also approving more loan modifications and refinances to help owner’s stay in their home instead of considering foreclosure proceedings as the first option. According to a new report for March by Lender Processing Services, the number of owners who are behind on payments or in danger of foreclosure dropped below the 5 million mark for the first time since 2008. LPS reports that by the end of March the number of homes in foreclosure dropped to 3.4%, down from 4.2% just a year ago.

We are also seeing a huge increase in banks using deeds-in-lieu of foreclosure. A deed-in-lieu of foreclosure allows the bank to take possession of a home while foregoing the foreclosure process. Often times a deed-in-lieu comes with an offer of “cash for keys” an incentive for owners to vacate the home without letting it fall into foreclosure. Nationwide, in 2012, deeds-in-lieu were up 40% from 2011 according to RealtyTrac.

There are still many great deals on homes available as we see prices rising slowly. For the week we saw average mortgage rates drop .02% to 3.65% keeping home affordability at record lows. If you have thought about purchasing a property in the Great Smoky Mountain region now is the time to start looking. We invite you to visit our website to browse all of the available properties in the area.

Here Are A Few Of My Featured Listings:

180 Degree City & Mountain Views Produced over $14k in rental income in 2012. Very private ridgetop retreat w/wraparound covered deck that has amazing 180 degree views of the mountains & city lights. Type: Single Family Home Location: Chalet Village Price: $189,900 Get more information >
Great Income, Perfect Location Over $40,000 in rental income for 2012! Big open floor plan with 5 bedrooms & bath suites. Four of the suites have whirlpools & 3 feature fireplaces. Type: Single Family Home Location: Gatlinburg ,Tennessee Price: $299,900 Get more information >
Charming River Front Cottage Almost $15,000 in rental income for 2012. Sitting right along the Little Pigeon River, this charming cottage is just minutes to the Pigeon Forge Parkway. Type: Single Family Home Location: Pigeon Forge Price: $177,900 Get more information >