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Should You Buy A Short Sale?

Short sales now make up 20% of the homes for sale in the Twin Cities, an increase in recent months because short sale inventory remains near all-time highs and the number of "traditional seller" homes are the market has begun its seasonal decrease.  This means that no matter where you are searching and what you are searching for, you are very likely to come across several homes for sale that are short sales.  So the question is: should you buy a short sale home? I have discussed short sales many times (1, 2, 3, … [Read more...]

Are Higher-End Twin Cities Foreclosures Coming?


For a while now there's been some talk that the foreclosure activity would become more prevalent in the higher-priced home market - well as of yet we haven't seen that materialize.  In fact, by far the strongest activity remains in the lowest price ranges for both foreclosures and short sales: In the future we may see an influx of foreclosures at higher price points but for right now our local MLS is showing the foreclosure activity is still more heavily found in the lower price points. … [Read more...]

How Much 'Shadow Inventory' Is There?

The National Association of REALTORS has put together a video discussing the amount and type of  'Shadow Inventory' nationally.  The biggest problem with such figures is that they are still based off of sampling & definitions of what is or is not counted in the definition.  Regardless of what the actual number is, the video discusses how banks are putting more focus on short sales than they have in the past - which I believe to be a much better option than letting these properties go through the entire … [Read more...]

Twin Cities Short Sales Help

No matter what happens with the economy, interest rates and house prices, the next few years we will continue to see both foreclosures and short sales.  From an owner's perspective, a short sale will often do less damage to their credit than a foreclosure - though in many cases the damage can be almost equal. There is a lot of work that goes into a short sale and lots to watch out for. If you or someone you know is considering your options, my coworkers and I can help explain the process, direct you to … [Read more...]

Simple Explanation For Why HAFA Will Not Help Short Sales With 2nd Mortgages

The always excellent Calculated Risk goes into the simple reasons why 2nd mortgage holders are unlikely to embrace HAFA. When a 2nd mortgage holder can only recover 3% of the loan or $3000, whichever is LESS, and they have to release the seller from all future liability, I can see why they will not be quick to take the deal.  In Minnesota, a foreclosure does not wipe out the 2nd lienholder's rights and therefore it's quite possible that they will seek future payments via collections - I could imagine them … [Read more...]

If you're eyeing a home that's a potential short sale, be prepared to be in it for the long haul.  Short sales can be more time consuming than traditional sales, but if you're in a position where you can be flexible with your close date, your patience could well be worth the wait. A short sale means that the seller has negotiated or intends to negotiate - with their lender to pay off their existing mortgage for less than what they owe on the home. This is different from a foreclosed home, where the homebuyer has … [Read more...]

Traditional, Bank Owned and Short Sales – A Comparison

Most of my buyers are NOT housing experts... they are "regular people" and are experts in whatever field they work in but not in real estate.  That's just fine because that's why people like me have jobs doing what we do!  One of the most frequent topics that comes up is the differences between traditional sellers, short sales and bank owned (aka foreclosure or REO) homes.  Below you will find a summary of many of the big differences, which is also available in a PDF one-page format if you'd like to print … [Read more...]

Coming Soon – New Foreclosure & Short Sale Search Options

10 months after the Minneapolis/St. Paul area MLS (RMLS of MN) made available the somewhat-useful-but-really-bastardized-lender-mediated-mls-field and 14 months after I started openly pushing for specific fields, they have now come to see the light and are redoing the fields as three separate and distinct fields that address each of the major questions/problems of lender mediated listings: Three new required fields will be added to NorthstarMLS. (Tentatively planned for activation Tuesday night--we will let you … [Read more...]

Minnesota 2008 Foreclosure Statistics Released

2008 Minnesota Foreclosures by County

Thanks to the Minnesota Homeownership Center Blog for telling me about HousingLink's Q4 2008 update to their Foreclosure Report. What's especially interesting to me is the chart showing foreclosure counts as a percentage of total houses: MAAR did a similar "heat map" for the Twin Cities, specifically looking at 2008 "lender mediated sales" - which are foreclosures or short sales in our MLS: … [Read more...]

Q4 Lender Mediated Report & City Level Data Released

Hennepin County Sheriff Sales through December 2008

Today I am pleased to announce the release of the Foreclosures and Short Sales in the Twin Cities Housing Market: Q4 2008 Update.  This is the 4th installment of quarterly reporting of lender mediated sales and their impact in the Greater Minneapolis/St. Paul area, which I co-author with the musically, intellectually, politically and statistically talented Jeff Allen.  2008 reports from quarters 1, 2 and 3 are also available. Here's how to know if buying a foreclosure or short sale is right for you. This … [Read more...]


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This website is a service of Aaron Dickinson of Edina Realty, a broker Participant of the Regional Multiple Listing Service of Minnesota, Inc.