I am a big believer in keeping yourself up to date with the latest news from the real estate world. I have been reading the DSNews everyday and I have begun to link to articles form the site and even re-print when I think they are news worthy to real estate investing in Memphis. This article definitely defines one reason we are having so much trouble getting a housing recovery to take hold and gain traction.
In an effort to develop a clear view of the real estate market, Homes & Land, a Tallahassee, Florida-based provider of real estate media and marketing, recently asked thousands of real estate agents for their opinions about their local real estate market and published the results in its Market Pulse Survey Report.
When asked if the Home Affordable Modification Program “has reduced the rate of foreclosures in your market,” only 10 percent of respondents said yes. Of those remaining, 65 percent responded no, and 25 percent were unsure.
“Unfortunately, the data on the program to date and the responses from our survey show that HAMP has done little to help,” said Eric Adair, business development analyst for Homes & Land. “Clearly respondents to our survey don’t believe this program is helping to reduce foreclosures.”
Despite the low enthusiasm about HAMP, overall optimism seems to be improving, with most agents reporting an increase in homebuyer interest. Regional responses in states with the highest foreclosure rates showed even higher buyer interest—Arizona, at 71 percent; California, at 64 percent; and Florida, at 67 percent—than the national average of 58 percent.
However, Home & Land said the increase appears to be coming in the form of distressed sales. Only 14 percent of agents reported that the majority of their sales over the last 12 months came from distressed sales, but reports of distressed sales were much higher in Arizona, at 38 percent; California, at 35 percent; and Florida, at 26 percent.
The survey also found that 41 percent of respondents believe real estate prices in their market have bottomed out. However, 36 percent don’t believe prices have hit their lowest, and 23 percent were not sure. In addition, 47 percent of agents said only 0 percent to 10 percent of their clients have purchases a home using the homebuyer tax credit in the last three months.
“Almost 5800 Realtors and agents across the United States participated in the Market Pulse Survey,” Adair said. “We will continue ‘taking the pulse’ of as many local markets as we can throughout 2010 to better identify trends and regional market conditions.”