Here’s a spooky bit of data: vacant homes in the foreclosure process are expected to drop 9 percent in the third quarter from a year ago, but vacant bank-owned properties are expected to jump 67 percent during the period, according to ATTOM Data Solutions.
This Halloween season, zombies nationwide are creeping into the least desirable areas for investors like New York, Philadelphia, and Chicago. With a steep rise in vacant, foreclosed homes, otherwise known as “zombie foreclosures,” it would seem that these monsters could actually give some relief to what CNBC is calling “a housing market plagued with extremely short supply.” Unfortunately, this is simply not the case; the homes in these economically troubled parts of the nation are in the deepest financial despair and are inevitably left to deteriorate. That being said, economist Daren Blomquist predicts, “Eventually there will be demand. Some investor will be interested in these properties given the environment we’re in and also more interest in the urban infill type of developments.” But for now, any opportunities zombie foreclosures might provide cost too much and so remain as vacant as the homes themselves.
Despite the demand from those looking for a good deal, any impactful investment in zombie foreclosures would have to be significant since courthouse auctions funnel out the best of the properties. The remaining homes are in need of thousands of dollars in repairs to make them rentable or ready for market sales. Needless to say, as one real estate auction executive put it, “These are not the properties that are going to fix the inventory problem.”
Thankfully, here in California, zombies are running for the hills! According to CNBC, San Jose, California, one the nation’s most desirable housing markets, has a vacancy rate of just 0.2 percent, compared with Flint, Michigan, which has a rate of 7.1 percent. A comparatively high demand for housing, low inventory levels, and marketing conditions that are ideal for selling properties all make for the perfect potion to fight a zombie takeover. So as long as these conditions stay consistent, Californians are safe on the homefront.
Still worried about zombies? Contact me at (619) 857-7191 – I would love to share my knowledge about the housing market with you!