Foreclosures, uncertainty dominate Phoenix housing market: ASU
A report from Arizona State University shows 65% of home sales in the Phoenix area last month were either foreclosures or the resales of previously foreclosed properties. “We’re seeing even more uncertainty in the marketplace than a month ago, including more distrust surrounding the foreclosure process,” said associate professor of real estate Jay Butler, the report’s author. "With foreclosure moratoriums and weak economic and job growth heightening the uncertainty, the road to housing recovery has become rougher.” Butler said the uncertainty in the housing market could affect the availability of title insurance, the willingness of people to buy REOs, and the public perception and acceptance of the home-financing process. Sales levels and prices could drop lower than people generally expect as the nation waits for the anemic recovery to gain steam, he said. The Phoenix area had about 3,400 residential foreclosures in October, compared to 3,800 in October of 2009. Foreclosures accounted for 42% of existing home sales in October, the lowest percentage recorded since June, but Butler attributes that to cyclical declines in the housing market during the fall and winter months. “With children in school and the coming of the holidays, the typical pattern is for sales and foreclosures to slow through the remainder of the year,” he said. About 4,700 homes were resold in the Phoenix area in October, down from 6,100 in October 2009. The median price of a home resold was $135,000, down from $140,000 a year earlier. About 500 townhouse/condominiums were foreclosed on last month, according to the report. The median price for a townhouse/condo sold in October was $80,000, down from $95,750 last October. Butler’s full report and other ASU housing reports can be found here. Write to Kerry Curry.