Short sales continue to be a significant portion of real estate sales in the Phoenix Az valley. And they affect each city to varying degrees. For example, short sales in Sun Lakes were 12% of the total sales in June 2011, while in El Mirage they accounted for 41% of the sales. Other cities were somewhere in the middle; Gilbert – 35%, Chandler – 35%, and Scottsdale – 23%. During the month of June 2011, there were 91 waterfront properties that were sold as a short sale transaction. Short sales provide a method for homeowners experiencing a financial hardship to sell their home. And lenders see short sales as a way to prevent costly foreclosures. Freddie Mac CEO, Ed Haladman, summed it best when he said, “Freddie Mac is doing everything it can to prevent more foreclosures, and short sales are becoming an ever-popular tool in situations where foreclosure is imminent and modifications have failed.” Properly negotiated short sales also offer homeowners a way to sell their homes without a deficiency judgement and in many cases the opportunity to purchase a home within 2 – 3 years. The above chart provided by The Cromford Report shows the percentage of 2011 June sales with the blue bars.
Will Your Short Sale Last?
Contract acceptance is the honeymoon… everyone anticipates a happy ending, then real life sets in. As in real life not all marriages survive, neither do all accepted short sale offers! Its like dating a beauty queen or the all-star quarterback. It’s love at first sight and WOW that list price is amazing. It may be the nicest Scottsdale, Chandler or Gilbert waterfront property you’ve seen. But with time you find out that this short sale process uncovers some severe flaws that were unforeseen. Here’s real life situations where “flaws” have surfaced and that promising short sale deal falls apart before happily ever after comes!
It is very common to associate a foreclosure with a bank, and this idea is reinforced when we see advertisements for “bank owned” properties. Mistakenly, we also believe banks are taking the biggest financial hit when a house is sold as a foreclosure. However, the fact is that in many cases a foreclosure is not owned by a bank. If not the bank, then who owns these distressed properties and takes the financial loss? Continue reading “Who really loses on a foreclosure – the bank? Think Again!”
In any given month, distressed sales (foreclosures,short sales, or trustee sales) account for over 50% of the total sales in most all of the Phoenix valley cities. Ski lake properties have been somewhat insulated from this type of transaction, but during 2010 distressed sales have increased in these unique waterfront communities. Three of the Phoenix ski communities had no recorded sales of any kind in 2010. All sales during the year ocurred in Gilbert ski lake communities; Crystal Point, Santan Lakeside and Playa del Rey Estates. 33% of those were distressed sales.
Short sales, once almost unknown, have become a significant part of the real estate jargon in Phoenix Az. Short sales remain one of the most misunderstood real estate transactions inspite of their increasing numbers. There are many aspects and implications a seller must understand reinforcing the need to seek competent legal and tax advice. First of all, let’s define an Arizona short sale. A short sale is when the lender/investor is willing to authorize the sale when the proceeds do not cover the outstanding loan amount. What are the issues to be considered by Phoenix valley homeowners regarding a short sale?
The graph to the left shows the the monthly price per square foot of sales for the last 10 years for Gilbert and Chandler. A good opportunity to see where we are compared to pre-bubble sales activity. The twin cities of Gibert and Chandler have similar trends for the last 10 years. Current price per square foot is similar to 1993 levels. Do other Phoenix area cities have similar patterns?
Phoenix Arizona Short Sales and “upside down” homes.
Short sales in Phoenix, Gilbert, Chandler,Queen Creek, Scottsdale and all across the valley are taking center stage as they have become the topic of any Az real estate discussion. Many a buyer or seller that has been through a short sale transaction will undoubtedly compare it to high drama movie because of the highs and lows, a soap opera because it never ends or a nightmare due to all of the above. These discussions will continue with home prices at current levels. According to an article in the Phoenix Business Journal, First American CoreLogic Inc., estimates that 51% of the mortgaged properties in Arizona are “upside down”, also described as having negative equity, because the balance on the mortgage is more than the market value of the home. This is confirmed by the fact that in most Phoenix area towns and communities, distressed sales account for 50 – 75% of the monthly home sales. Therefore, many homeowners will need to become well informed of the various aspects of a short sale when a situation arises and they need to sell. The following are important points that must be considered:
Lot 17 on the west side of the ski lake at Santan Lakeside Estates just came on the market the last week of February bringing the total lots for sale to 3. The other available lots are 3 and 17. Many water ski enthusiasts and owners will be watching this specific transaction as it will aid in determining the current market value of a Phoenix valley water ski lot. So how did they set the list price for this ski lake lot at $340,000? My opinon? You have to go back to 2009 when lot 13, previously a bank owned lot was initially listed for $480K. After periodic price reductions that are consistent with bank owned property, the list price eventually reached $399K, an offer for $340K was accepted and closed in August 2009. When that is the only comparable sale, it makes sense to use it! Getting back to lot 17; a couple of early offers were received within days of being listed, but considered too low by the bank. Time will tell as the ski season approaches and the bank watches the days on market increase , and periodically considers price reductions. See sales update further down in article.
One of the most confusing and frustrating types of real estate sales is the short sale transaction. Having helped owners that have a financial hardship and negative equity sell their home and also assisted buyers in the purchase of short sales, I felt it would be beneficial to highlight some different facets of Phoenix area short sales. Here are two simple facts that will help a buyer become more prepared and successful when considering a waterfront short sale or any type of short sale purchase.
Chandler and Gilbert Average Prices for Sold Homes in 2008 & 2009.
I heard a saying that accurately describes our current media. It is credited to Mark Twain, “If you don’t read the newspaper, you’re uninformed. If you read the newspaper, you’re mis-informed”. I guess the more things change the more they stay the same! This description also applies to those 5 second sound bites regarding real estate in Arizona. I feel more comfortable when I can see the data and draw my own conclusions. It is an oft used phrase but all real estate is local so what applies to the country does not necessarily apply to our corner of the state. Here’s a local look at two desirable cities in the Phoenix area, Gilbert and Chandler.