May 15, 2007

Home Sales Rate Fell 6.6 Percent in 1Q

Sales of existing homes in the U.S. are on track to hit 6.4 million this year, down 6.6 percent from the pace of a year ago, the National Association of Realtors said Tuesday in the latest indication of the housing market's slowdown.

The report came on the same day as industry research firm RealtyTrac Inc. reported that mortgage lenders in April foreclosed on 62 percent more U.S. homes than a year ago as borrowers failed to keep up with loan payments.

Mortgage Woes Force Banks To Take Hits to Sell Homes

A surge of foreclosures over the past year or so has left lenders struggling to sell a growing backlog of homes. Rather than relying on real-estate agents, the usual practice, some are turning to large-scale auctions to speed up the sale process.
At the San Diego sale, houses and condos typically sold for about 30% below the previous sale or appraisal prices. In a few cases, the discounts were around 50%.

A four-bedroom home in Oceanside, Calif., attracted a high bid of $495,000 at the auction, 33% below the sale price recorded in November 2005 for the property. One condo in San Diego sold for $120,000, less than half of its previous value.

Temporary unemployment: Not necessarily a barrier to a Mortgage

n many situations, temporary unemployment will not exclude a potential borrower from qualifying for a mortgage. It is not always necessary for a borrower to be employed in the same position for at least two years or even in the same field of work, depending on other factors.

No comments: