According to the latest reports, both home values and foreclosure filings are down. While many think that a drop in foreclosures is a sign that economic times are improving, the figures are a bit misleading.
The decline in foreclosures seen in Florida and throughout the nation most likely has to do with the allegations concerning robo-signing and document fraud. Late last year many banks suspended their foreclosures after allegations of robo signing, fraud, documentation errors, issues with process servers, problems servicing loan modifications, and other similar issues, prompted many lenders to slow down the foreclosure process which in turn has slowed down the housing recovery.
Because of these allegations, many lenders are carefully reviewing their procedures and inspecting documents. Other factors that led to the drop include the short month of February and bad weather.
In Miami-Dade County, filings were down 8 percent from January and 66 percent from February 2010. As for home prices in South Florida, they fell 14.5 percent since January of last year. National figures show that home values fell 7.3 percent.
Experts believe that depreciation rates will begin to stabilize and foresee a reduction in the depreciation rates in the spring numbers ahead of an eventual bottom nationally later this year.
What does all of is mean? Its tough to tell. The drop in values means the housing market recession is not over. It also means that it would be imprudent to expect another month in which the foreclosure rates drop. After the banks finish reviewing their practices, we may begin to see a surge in foreclosure rates. Also, these reviews may continue for the foreseeable future. This is certainly true in light of the fact that very recently HSBC indefinitely suspended foreclosures to conduct a review of their practices.
On the other hand, it also means that buyers have many wonderful investment opportunities available to them. Indeed, buyers continue to find bargains by purchasing foreclosed homes in record numbers. Given the historically low interest rates, coupled with the low prices for many properties, especially foreclosed properties, the timing may never be better to purchase a new a property. Our firm can certainly assist you in your real estate needs should you be interested in purchasing property.
We are certainly in difficult times. Not only can a foreclosure be daunting, it can break an individual’s spirit. However, there are solutions, and alternatives, to foreclosures. At Alvarez & Barbara, we understand all of our client’s individual needs and pride ourselves in providing high quality service. If you’re facing a foreclosure, don’t let it bring you down. Call us today so we can show you that the saying “every problem has a solution” is an undeniable truth.