Shadow inventory of solds?

We’ve all heard about the “shadow inventory” of foreclosures that is supposed to hit the real estate market. But could there be a “shadow inventory” of sold properties? Last week, L.A. Times published an article which states that real estate sales and home prices are not so hot for the Southland. Here’s the link if the title won’t link. As always, I’m not going to argue with statistics, but I don’t know that they tell the whole story. Yes, the early part of 2011 was slow, but I think there could be another reason for low numbers.

IMO, the sales numbers may be skewed by the sheer number of short sales out there. Here’s how it works. A regular home lists, attracts offers, and the buyer and seller enter a contract. The house usually closes escrow 30 to 90 days later and the sale is reported in both the multiple listing service and to the county tax assessor. That’s where all the data comes from. But with short sales, the buyer and seller can be in contract for four to eight months before the bank even approves the sale. During the time period, regardless of the agreement between buyer and seller, the house must be listed as “active” on the mls (the banks in their wisdom mandate this.) And then it can take a month or so to close. (For example, I had one last year that went eight months before it closed, and another one cancel after four months before the bank even got around to approving it.) Not to be Pollyanna-ish, but considering that a high percentage of homes on the market are distressed sales, I think we may be experiencing more of a time delay in reporting actual sale transactions, than in actual sales. What do you think?

Shadow inventory of solds? Rating: 4.5 Diposkan Oleh: jembe