Saturday, January 24, 2009
Flood of Home Foreclosures coming will be WORSE THAN YOU THINK!
Flood of foreclosures: It's worse than you think
Banks are moving slowly to list repossessed homes for sale, which could mean that housing inventory is even more bloated than current statistics indicate.
NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Housing might be in worse shape than we think.
There is probably even more excess housing inventory gumming up the market than current statistics indicate, thanks to a wave of foreclosures that has yet to hit the market.
The problem: Many foreclosed homes and other distressed properties that are now owned by banks have yet to be listed for sale. The volume of this so-called 'ghost inventory' could be substantial enough to depress already steeply falling prices when it does go on the market.
"That's not good news," said Pat Newport, an analyst with IHS Global Insight. "[Excess] inventory is the biggest problem in housing these days, and it leads to lower housing prices, which leads to more foreclosures."
RealtyTrac, the online marketer of foreclosed properties, recently discovered that it has far more foreclosed properties listed in its database, which the company compiles using courthouse records, than there are listed in the multiple listing services (MLS) maintained by real estate agents.
The phenomenon of a growing ghost inventory doesn't promise to get better anytime soon, as long as the rate of foreclosures continues to ravage the market. There were more than 3.1 million foreclosure filings in 2008, according to RealtyTrac.
Said Sharga: "I don't see how we can avoid another 3 million in 2009."
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