We have access to title records as Realtors, and via those sites we can get an idea of what's happening, foreclosure wise, in our pretty little valley.
As of today, 3/29/12, this is what our title reports are telling me:
In all of Santa Clarita Valley (Acton, Agua Dulce, Canyon Country, Saugus, Valencia, Newhall, Stevenson Ranch, and Castaic) we have 707 homes that are noted as Bank-Owned. The highest number is in the 91387 zip code with118, and lowest is in 91381, with 41.The 91387 zip is part of Canyon Country and Fair Oaks Ranch and 91381 is Stevenson Ranch and Westridge Valencia.
Homes noted as status Auction (generally meaning a Notice of Trustee Sale date has been recorded) equal 1213. Again 91387 is the highest with 189. This time, Acton is the lowest, with a mere 47. Auction means buy it at the courthouse steps or get foreclosed on.
Pre-Foreclosure status (Notice of Default has been recorded) amounts to 694. Again, 91387 highest at 110 and Acton lowest at 35.
That's over 2600 homes that are bank involved. Many will end up on the MLS, some will get there as REO's, some as Short-Sales. The first two will be the likeliest candidates for REO's. Hope that the last category will get loan mods, forbearance, reduction, or SS success.
Now, may sound like a lot? Not so much, really. I checked the census information for 2010. We have 176,320 people living here ~ ha, that we know of! And, we have 62,055 housing units. For sake of ease, I'm going to presume most of those are ownership units. You see, that 2600 isn't really all that much in the grand scheme of SCV things.
Right now, in our MLS, we have under 800 homes available for sale. A good, comfy market is about 1300 active listings. Give me those REO's and we'd sell right through them. And, I think the possibility of, by the time they make it to the market, the remaining two groups would be getting cleared out pretty quickly also.
I've been saying for a while, and I'm hearing others thinking the same thoughts lately, that the banks are hanging onto these REO's so that their books look better to the 'board', or their investors. The loan is 500, the value is 300. When they get it back, it still looks like 500 until they sell it for 300? I'm not sure.
Now, I read something today that is making me think otherwise......calculating person that I am....
Bottom is here, the article said, appreciation to start next year. Super. Unemployment is improving, the economy is getting better. I know, seems hard to believe! Keep with me here.....So with the improvement, inflation goes up a bit, yes? And, interest rates go up a tad, too....right?
Now, the banks are in the business of loans, not owning homes......are you with me now? Ya think they are holding onto these homes, earning a bit of appreciation (remember my blog post about B of A and mortgage to lease?), and then, when rates are a smidgen higher....they will release them and get new mortgage loans on them!!!
Although we have a couple thousand in distress, it's not so much that we can't clear them out....if we only had them to get to......