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Investor Purchases Slow Over Last Year as Short Sales Pick Up

With the exception of short sales, activity for distressed sales was relatively calm in June, according to data from ""RealtyTrac"":http://www.realtytrac.com/content/foreclosure-market-report/us-residential-sales-report-june-2013-7812.


Last month, institutional investors, or non-lending entities that bought at least 10 properties in the last 12 months, accounted for 9 percent of residential sales. The share represents a slight increase from 8 percent in May, and a small decrease from 10 percent in June 2012.

REO sales remained stable, accounting for 9 percent of sales, down from 10 percent in May and unchanged from a year ago.

Cash sales also saw little change in June. About 30 percent of residential sales were all-cash transactions compared to 31 percent in May and June 2012. Though, several Florida metros held a notably high share of cash sale transactions, including Cape Coral-Fort Myers (70 percent), Miami (64 percent), Sarasota (59 percent), and Tampa (58 percent).


Meanwhile, short sales saw a significant increase over the last year, representing 14 percent of all sales in June, up from 8 percent a year ago. In May, short sales represented 15 percent of sales.

""The U.S. housing market is slowly but surely moving toward a more normalized and sustainable pattern after a flurry of institutional and cash buyers flocked to residential real estate last year, pushing up prices and picking clean the best inventory available in many areas,"" said Daren Blomquist, VP at RealtyTrac.

Distressed inventory may not be as widely available, but there are still many markets dealing with an oversupply of foreclosures.

""Markets where sales increased in June tend to be in states with that lingering distressed inventory, whereas markets where sales decreased tend to be in states that more quickly absorbed distressed inventory thanks to a relatively fast foreclosure process and strong demand,"" Blomquist explained.

After tracking sales prices, RealtyTrac found the national median price of a home rose to $168,000 in June, up monthly and yearly by 3 and 5 percent, respectively.

When compared to non-distressed sales, which average a median sales price $181,500, RealtyTrac reported foreclosures or bank-owned properties sell at a discount of 34 percent. States with steeper discounts included Ohio (58 percent), Michigan (48 percent), Illinois (47 percent), Massachusetts (46 percent), and Wisconsin (45 percent).

About Author: Esther Cho


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