By George Clements – Greenville SC Realtor
I came across a recent USA Today online article that caught my attention. It focused on foreclosures and the areas that have been hit the hardest. According to the article by Brad Heath, half of the nations foreclosures are in only 35 counties or around 1% of the nations counties. These hardest hit areas included places like Detroit, Cleveland, Las Vegas, Phoenix, Washington D.C., and worst of all Southern California and Southern Florida.
So how does the Greenville Real Estate Market look when it comes to foreclosures? In the last year, our foreclosure rate has gone up from .08% to .09%, basically no change. The nation as a whole has gone up from .5% to 1.2% with those 35 counties being the main cause of the increase. 650 counties have actually seen a decrease in the amount of foreclosures. Part of the reason that Greenville’s foreclosure rate is so low is the low amount of sub prime loans in the area, 6% less than the rest of the nation. Also, our cost of living has stayed steady but affordable and we did not see extremely high prices like San Diego or Miami did. The House Price Index (HPI), that measures the price of residential housing, shows that 9 out of the 10 markets with the highest price depreciation are in California. Those 10 markets lost between 28.05% and 29.92% in home value in just one year (Source: First American Core Logic). Miami is the only other area in the top 10 not in California.
What can we learn from this information? First, don’t listen to the news. The Greenville market is not flooded with foreclosures. Second, since we are not flooded with foreclosures, there are not amazing deals to be found on every street. We do have a number of foreclosed homes that are available but most of them need quite a bit of work and you cannot expect to find the deal of a lifetime. You can make money foreclosures but it takes a lot of patience for the right one as well as money for repairs. If you are in the market for a Miami condo or California suburban home, then now is your chance for an amazing deal. Why do that though when you could buy in Thornblade for the same price?