Heavy drop of foreclosure in Cape Coral, Florida

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I saw the big title in the newspaper today. There had been 656 foreclosure lawsuits filed in Lee County in October, the lowest range in a lot more than three years, according to statistics released Monday by the South West Florida Real Estate Investment Association.

It was a rare ray of hope in a grim situation: The Lee County and Cape Coral  foreclosure rate is normally within the top five metropolitan areas nationwide, with only Las Vegas consistently worse.

October’s variety is down 31 % from September’s 953. Yes, you read me: 31% less than the month before. The pace hasn’t been this slow since quite a long time.  555 had been filed in February 2007 as the wave of mortgage failures that followed the housing boom was just obtaining under way.

Experts stated that the decline likely was part of a long-term downward pattern — but that’s not all.

Foreclosures possibly plunged at least in aspect since for the past month, some banks have been holding off on foreclosures whilst they sort out issues including who truly owns the note and whether attorneys basically read all the paperwork, but the holding was only for 1 week and from 2 banks, including a major one though: Bank of America.

But the recent lender troubles alone couldn’t have caused a drop as sharp as October’s. Bankers “did knock some things out, but in the totality with the trend, no. 10 to 20 percent of your mortgages might be affected,” but not enough to account for the whole drop.

County Clerk of Court Charlie Green said that whatever the trigger, the downward pattern has helped whittle away at a daunting backlog of foreclosures within the court system: Public auctions disposing of properties are now outnumbering new filings.

Only about 14,700 cases are from the pipeline now, Green mentioned, down practically half from the 26,000 when the difficulty peaked at the end of 2008.

Still, he cautioned that there’s a substantial “shadow inventory” of houses that banks are selecting not to foreclose on. “I believe we’re clearing some out, but the banks are holding back.”

But we don’t really know how many far more. Next month will give us a better indication as to whether or not it was a normal trend or lenders stopping until they figure out what the issue with their process was.”

Also the pace of foreclosure doesn’t occur in a vacuum: if the winter tourist season is strong, it will reduce unemployment and keep far more people financially able to keep their homes, which is the case in South West Flroida, which include Cape Coral.

I think it will be only in April, May, June of next year that we’ll see how this season’s sales and the economic effect of your season influenced foreclosures.

A big builder in Cape Coral, stated that whatever the short-term pattern, foreclosures can’t sustain themselves at that pace. It’s going to sooner or later start slowing up. And I think it is happening right now.

Also, the issues with the foreclosure process have made some prospective buyers skittish about buying a previously mortgaged house.

However, while I find it easier to sell to prospective renters a house where owners are living in than a foreclosure, that  non distresses market has a hard time to compete with the foreclosures. Plus, new potential buyers have still a hard time to accept the fact that most of the time, there is a multiple offer situation on every foreclosed properties, ending by an accepted offer above the asking price. Often, those buyers go through a 3 step buying process. The first is the below asking price period where the buyer experience the frustration of being outbid. Then there is the full price offers period of time, which is usually shorter than the first one. Most of the time, the buyers learned their lessons and go the third period, the above asking price offers moment where they finally get a property under contract.

It’s now even more difficult with the decrease of the number of foreclosure and with a possible increase of pricing, even for foreclosures.

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Comments (0) Nov 02 2010

Buying a foreclosure in Cape Coral, Florida

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So you want to purchase a property in foreclosure here, in Lee County in general and in Cape Coral in particular? Good move. It’s time to buy. Properties values are increasing little by little, month after month since spring 2010 and you can expect a sweet equity very soon, especially if your purchase a Cape Coral foreclosure.

However, lots of potential buyers I talked to believe that if a foreclosure is price at, let’s say, $100,000, they can offer 10% or 20% less than the asking price, empowered by a solid down payment, and thinking that after all, it’s foreclosure time for everyone.

Well, the reality is not as simple.

So far, 100% of my buyers who actually were successful at purchasing a foreclosure, paid more than asking price.
And, all of them learnt how to get that property after several offers. Some below asking, where they were outbid. A few at asking price, where they were outbid. And finally their own purchase, paid at higher than asking price, like everybody else.

So, contact me if you want to purchase a foreclosure in Lee County, but make sure to be ready:

1) Get your Pre-approval document

A foreclosure’s owner is a bank or sometimes a person or a company who made a private financing for the buyer. You will most likely make an offer to a bank though. Banks are not in the Real Estate business but in the money business. Therefore, they don’t want to waste any time and want to make sure that the next buyer is fully capable of buying. They will not review your offer if there is not a pre-approval document, signed by your bank or mortgage broker even if your offer is twice their asking price. A pre-qualification will not help. Just get your pre-approval in hand.

2) Get your proof of fund for the down payment.

Most banks, if not all of them, required a proof of fund for your down payment or if you plan to pay in cash. If the bank can’t see a proof that you have the money, they will not sign your offer. Period.

3) Be prepare to offer a price HIGHER than the asking price.

For this one, you will have a hard time to believe me. Fair enough. But know right now that 95% of the time, your below asking price or even your asking price offer will not fly. I have seen attractive foreclosed homes sold with an easy 15% higher than asking price. So be prepared.

Now, don’t make me wrong. Ultimately, you will be the buyer, the one who will pay and with the last word. But then again, you’ll be entering in the club of the buyers who need a proof of what I’m saying here.

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Comments (0) Oct 24 2010

Real Estate agent: documents you need for your short sales.

Posted: under Realtor® Tools.
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First of all, understand the short sales.

A short sale is a transaction that happens when a homeowner is owning more money on his/her home than what it is worth in today’s Real Estate market, and when the bank or the lender is willing to take less than what the homeowner owes.
Most of the time, that bank or lender will be able to collect more money with a short sale than if the homeowner goes into bankruptcy or foreclosure. That’s why they will be listening to short sales under certain circumstances.
For the homeowner, the short sale transaction is a better situation than going bankrupt or foreclosed. They credit will be hurt for 2 or 3 years instead of the 7+ years in a foreclosure situation.

Secondly, here are a list of documents you will need in order to prepare the short sale transaction with the bank representative:

FOR THE REALTOR:

  • ~ Signed letter of authorization from seller authorizing you to negotiate with the lender on their behalf.
  • ~ Letter of facts about the property. Everything that is wrong with the property and why it is impossible to sell it at a higher price.
  • ~ Current Market Analysis. Highlight comparable sales that reflect the lower value.
  • ~ Photographs. Remember, the photographs aren’t to highlight a charming house. Photograph evidence of damage, bad location, etc…
  • ~ Evidence of all showings and feedback. Explain to lender results and conversations you’ve had while trying to sell the property.
  • ~ Copy of listing contract/MLS Listing/MLS history.
  • ~ Current “AS IS” CMA.
  • ~ Copy of purchase contract if you have one.
  • ~ Preliminary HUD
  • ~ Make sure the seller has a detailed, tear jerking letter of hardship. See an example here
  • ~ Sales and services Quotes

Also, insert copies of the following if any:
1. Code Violations
2. Fines
3. Hearing Information regarding the maintenance of the property
4. Evidence of lawsuits the City is filing against lenders
5. Evidence of pending litigation or changes in the law
6. Insert Tenant / Landlord provisions if it helps your case
7. Evidence of the town / city’s enforcement of fines against other banks
8. Latent Material Defect
9. Sexual offenders and predators

FROM THE SELLER:

    -Two years tax returns and W-2′s.
    -Three months bank statements.
    -Pay stubs for last 30 days.
    -Detailed monthly budget.
    -All mortgages with account numbers.
    -Copy of the deed.
    -Copy of the note and/or mortgage
    -Pending bankruptcy, or other action/judgment or lis pendens.
    -Tear jerking hardship letter. See an example here

Buyers generally get a lot more house for their money in a short sale situation, because these properties are usually very competitively priced in order for the sellers to unload them before they end up in foreclosure. It’s a very good situation for them. The only downside I see is often the multiple offers situation for those short sale properties. But there are a lot of short sale properties available in the Cape Coral Florida market than in other parts of the country, so this area is the place to buy!.

So, if you are thinking of buying a short sale, here are 3 tips:

1 – Find a Realtor with short sales experience. There are many rigorous short sales and foreclosure training programs available to real estate agents, including the Certified Distressed Property Expert (CDPE) and the Short Sales and Foreclosures Resource Certification (SFR). If you wish to purchase a short sale property in Cape Coral, Florida, or anywhere else for that matter, you will greatly increase your chances of getting your deal to closing if your agent is experienced and comfortable with short sales….either through a short sales certification program, or through hard knocks experience in the field.

2 – Get pre-approved. No short sale offer will be considered without a pre-approval or a proof of funds letter. If you have not yet been pre-approved by a local lender and are not sure who to call, your real estate agent is a good source of referrals. The pre-qualification process generally takes less than 30 minutes, and can be done over the phone, however, a pre-approval takes longer but is better than a pre-qualification. Make sure you work with a local lender – today’s wild & woolly finance environment means that you greatly increase your chances of closing a deal if you use a local lender with a good reputation. All short sale offers must be submitted with a pre-approval letter, or with a proof of funds, as bank’s statements, in the case of a cash transaction.

3) Submit your highest and best offer the first time around! Lenders generally do not counteroffer….they will either say “Yes” or “No”. So if you are going to go through the process of waiting 60 days or more to hear back from the lender, you will greatly increase your chances of hearing that “Yes!” if you submit a good, solid offer with no contingencies.

Once you submit an offer that is approved by the seller, the seller has to submit your offer to their lender to see if the lender will accept the offer as well….remember, in a short sale situation the lender is agreeing to accept less than what the homeowner owes on the mortgage…..and the lender is going to do whatever they can to minimize the amount of that loss to their bottom line. Parting with their profits is not something that comes easy to lenders…..so it takes awhile to find out if they are willing to take the level of financial beating that is inherent in the amount you are offering. Sometimes the wait can be up to 90 days….sometimes much more (the amount of the wait often depends upon which lender holds the paper).

Look at the frustrating wait time as the price you pay for getting the chance to get a home you might not otherwise be able to afford.

If you want to receive listing from banks, this program will give tremendous help to get in the game as well.

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Comments (0) Dec 31 2009

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