Wednesday, March 21, 2012

More Bank-Owned Homes Headed Our Way?

With the National Mortgage Settlement (aka ‘Robo-Settlement’) finally negotiated, major lenders are now able to re-examine their plans for dealing with the backlog of bank-owned homes. Local bank-owned homes may be only a tiny portion of the almost 1 million in play nationally, but are nonetheless subject to the wider phenomenon. Banks well realize that at some point, these homes have to enter the housing market. 

That development is a large part of why some analysts believe that for homeowners who want to sell, now might be the time to list. In our town as well as across the nation, their reasoning goes like this:

1. With housing prices at or near record lows, potential buyers who had been on the sidelines are seriously considering a home purchase. Many are aware that the bottom of the market may have been reached. They feel a sense of urgency to take advantage of that combined with record today’s low mortgage rates. For home sellers who have set the right price, it can mean that March is the beginning of a spring selling season filled with newly-motivated buyers.

2. The number of bank-owned homes is predicted to increase over the next few years. Lenders had put foreclosure activities on hold while negotiating the government settlement. But the coast is now clear for them to resume, with the number of bank-owned homes rising as a result. When that glut of bank-owned homes hits the market, it could end in a crowded market and prices driven back down.

3. Individual home sellers have a built-in advantage over banks because they can move a sale significantly faster. Banks are not well equipped to sell their inventory of bank-owned homes – most do not have the staff to handle listing properties or pushing the kind of energetic follow-through that gets deals done in a reasonable amount of time. Tales of frustrating delays are already widespread, and they make dealing with a homeowner and his agent all the more appealing. To some experienced buyers, the difference is worth a premium.

All these factors mean that now might just be the opportune time local sellers have been waiting for.  If you have been delaying your home sale, why not call me today to schedule a complimentary home price evaluation?

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