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November 10th, 2010 11:30 AM by David W. Welch
The number of homes for sale in Orlando continues to decline. Way back in May or June I was concerned we could see as many as 18,000 homes on the market by the end of the year. We did see an increase in the inventory immediately after the home buyer tax credit expired, but that was short lived. Then last month banks began to slow or even stop their foreclosures due to irregularities in their processes. Immediately there was a decline in the inventory of a few hundred homes. Some of those banks have resumed their foreclosures, yet the number of active foreclosure listings continues to drop slowly. We were seeing on average about 2,200 active bank owned listings with another 2,000 or so pending REO's. REO stands for real estate owned, which is what banks call the department that handles the properties they have taken back in foreclosure. Pendings continue run around 2,000, but the number of active listings has dropped to about 1,700.
Overall, the number of homes available for sale has dropped to 15,367 as of this morning. That is still a lot of homes, but we have not seen the inventory that low in quite some time. If you go back to December of last year, the number of homes for sale had dropped to 15,549 which was the low for the year. To find the last time the number of homes for sale was lower than it is today, you would have to go way back to March of 2006 when it was at 14,559. Back then the inventory of homes was just beginning to climb to its peak of around 26,000. There were also about 24,000 new homes in inventory too for a total of 50,000 homes for sale in Orlando. Over 60% of that inventory has been absorbed over the last four years. Prices have also dropped over 60% over that time period as well. I am estimating we will see another 30,000 foreclosures here in the two to three years before beginning to decline to "normal" levels.
David Welch Real Estate Optimist, Orlando Real Estate