Report: Low level of 'distressed' home sales in Baltimore area
The Baltimore region's share of short sales and foreclosures might seem high to us local folks, but those "distressed" home sales pale in comparison to most of the nation's largest metro areas.
That's according to real estate information firm CoreLogic, which ranks the Baltimore metro area third lowest among the top 25 regions. The company says 18 percent of sales here in June were short sales or bank-owned properties, compared with about 60 percent in Las Vegas and Riverside, Calif. (ranked first and second, respectively).
Nassau, N.Y. is the lowest among the major markets, with just 5 percent of its home sales in June qualifying as "distressed."
June was a tricky month, with buyers settling to beat what was then the homebuyer tax credit deadline. CoreLogic says the government incentive gave a boost to non-distress sales, so it expects the share of short sales and bank-owned transactions will rise in the tax-credit-less future.
"With the high level of negative equity, pending price declines and weak labor and income, non-distressed sales will remain weak well into 2011," the company says in its report.
In a separate CoreLogic analysis, I noticed a double-take-inducing trend in July: Prices in a variety of states fell faster excluding distressed sales than including them. Which is the exact opposite of what you'd expect.
Prices held up better with distressed sales included in nearly a third of the country.
In Arizona, a prime bubble-to-bust state, prices for all single-family sales dropped 3.1 percent in July but fell 5.6 percent counting only the non-distress deals, CoreLogic says.
And Michigan, whew -- down 1.1 percent for all and 6.7 percent for non-distress.
It wasn't just the poster children for the housing bust and/or recession. Consider Maine, up 4.5 percent for all sale prices but flat after excluding distress transactions.
Maryland was more typical, down 3.3 percent with all sales added in but flat once the distress sales were factored out.
What's up with the double-take states? The regular homeowner crowd there is dropping prices more rapidly than the banks, I suppose. (Presumably not to the point that their properties are cheaper than short sales and foreclosures.)
Or can you think of other reasons?