Homeowner Beware: The Return of Judicial Foreclosure in Oregon

If you’ve been reading the business news in the past couple of weeks, you’ve probably heard about Senate Bill 1552. It’s certainly garnered its share of press ink. And with good reason. As often is the case with government-imposed bank regulations, it has so far proven to be a miserable failure. The bill was intended to establish some new protections for consumers facing foreclosure by eliminating the banks’ dual-track foreclosure process (where a bank forecloses on borrowers in the midst of negotiating short sales or loan modifications) and forcing banks to meet face to face and mediate with borrowers seeking an alternative to foreclosure (such as a short sale or loan modification). Instead, HB 1552 has made a difficult and cumbersome process even more difficult and cumbersome. For many borrowers, it could also have some fairly significant financial ramifications. Unfortunately, the bill only applies to non-judicial foreclosures, which — up until this bill passed — meant most of the state’s residential foreclosure filings. Non-judicial foreclosure is typically considered a less expensive, more streamlined process than a judicial foreclosure, which is handled via the court system. Also, when an Oregon borrower undergoes a non-judicial foreclosure on their primary residence, they are protected by law from the bank pursuing a deficiency judgment (a monetary award based on the amount of the loan that the borrower defaulted on). There is no such consumer protection in Oregon for a judicial foreclosure. Not surprisingly, the banks are none too keen about participating in the newly required mediation program — it’s expensive and time-consuming. Their solution: Change the way they file their foreclosures. In a...

Foreclosure Prevention Workshops Scheduled at NeighborImpact

The influx of distressed-property housing inventory in Central Oregon may have slowed a bit, but there are still plenty of area homeowners who are struggling to make their mortgages. That’s one reason that NeighborImpact, the private nonprofit organization dedicated to serving economically challenged  Central Oregonians, offers a Foreclosure Prevention Workshop once every three weeks. The workshops are designed to address the educational needs of residents who are unable to make their mortgage payments or anticipate having trouble making their payments in the future. The workshop explains what to do if you fall behind on your mortgage payments, details the options you have if you’re unable to pay your mortgage and defines foreclosure-related terms such as “short sale” and “deed in lieu.” It also covers the basics of loan refinancing and loan modifications, outlines Oregon’s foreclosure regulations and timeline; and discusses the federal “Making Home Affordable” plan. After attending the workshop, participants can schedule an appointment to meet one-on-one with a NeighborImpact housing counselor. Both the workshop and counseling are free and open to the public; however NeighborImpact only can provide counseling to people who are at risk of losing their primary residence. For more information or to register for the workshop, call (541) 318-7506, x109; or email karenb@neighborimpact.org.  Upcoming workshop schedule: Oct. 24: Redmond NeighborImpact office, 2303 SW First St. Nov. 14: Bend office, 20310 Empire Ave., Suite 8110 Dec. 5: Redmond office, 2303 SW First St. Dec. 19: Redmond office, 2303 SW First St. Meanwhile, if you’re considering asking your bank for a permanent loan modification, check out the video below. It explains what you’ll need to know...
How’s the Market? 1st Quarter 2011 Real Estate Market Statistics for Central Oregon

How’s the Market? 1st Quarter 2011 Real Estate Market Statistics for Central Oregon

COAR, our local MLS affiliate, recently released the first quarter real estate market statistics for Central Oregon, which tracks year-on-year activity from 2007 through 2011. Not surprisingly, those numbers tell quite a story -– we’ve experienced a pretty bumpy ride in the past five years. Consequently, the trajectory of sales activity during the past five years varies pretty significantly among my main three markets (Bend, Redmond and Sisters). So for those wondering, ‘How’s the market in Central Oregon?’ the answer is, it depends on where you’re looking –- and what you’re looking at. (See the stats in chart form below.) But before we take a closer look at the most recent activity among Residential and Residential With Acreage listings in Bend, Redmond and Sisters, let’s recap for a second to answer a question that I’m often asked: When did the market peak in Central Oregon? The answer isn’t as simple as you might think. First of all, you have to define what you mean by “peak” — in many instances, the year that saw the highest total number of sales was not the same year that experienced the highest average sales amount. So, for example, first-quarter sales peaked in 2004 for Sisters Residential with Acreage listings (13 sales), while first-quarter sales peaked in 2005 for Sisters’ Residential listings (33), along with Bend’s and Redmond’s Residential with Acreage listings (84 and 30, respectively). It wasn’t until 2006 that first-quarter sales peaked in Bend’s and Redmond’s Residential listings (485 and 257). It was 2007, however, that saw the highest first-quarter average sales amount in most of our markets (Bend’s Residential listings...

Central Oregon’s Foreclosure Activity for December 2010

Each month, RealtyTrac keeps tabs on all publically recorded foreclosure-related activities — notices of default, foreclosure auction notices and bank repossessions — throughout the country. They also post “foreclosure home” listings -– short sales; bank and trustee auctions; and REOs, along with traditional listings across the country. They make their statistics available on their website on a state-by-state basis (which is then also broken down by county). Nevada has the dubious honor of having the country’s highest rate of foreclosure:  One in 11 homes in Nevada (more than 9 percent of its housing units) received at least one foreclosure filing in 2010. In December, 1 in every 84 housing units in Nevada (13,472 homes) received a foreclosure filing; there were 74,526 foreclosure homes for sale in Nevada in December, with an average sales price of $133,495.   RealtyTrac’s December Foreclosure Stats for Oregon: There were 28,534 foreclosure homes on the market, with an average sales price of $184,722. 1 in every 583 housing units received a foreclosure filing (i.e., default notice, foreclosure auction notice or bank repossession) in December. Multnomah County had the most filings (490), followed by Washington (423), Clackamas (338), Deschutes (312) and Jackson (199). Deschutes County update for December: There were 3,544 foreclosure homes on the market, with an average sales price of $154, 289. 1 in every 250 housing units received a foreclosure filing in December. Of the county’s 312 new foreclosure filings, Bend had the most, with 192, followed by Redmond (86), then La Pine (21), then Sisters (13). Jefferson County update for December: There were 235 foreclosure homes on the market. 1 in every 420 housing...

Highlights of RealtyTrac's Year-End Foreclosure Report for 2010

There were quite a few interesting tibits in RealtyTrac’s year-end 2010 U.S. Foreclosure Market Report, released Jan. 13. For starters, a record 2,871,891 U.S. properties received foreclosure filings in 2010. That figure shows an increase of nearly 2 percent from 2009 and an increase of 23 percent from 2008. Also worth note: 2.23 percent of all U.S. housing units received at least one foreclosure filing during 2010, up from 2.21 percent  in 2009. That’s one in 45 households. Five states — California, Florida, Arizona, Illinois and Michigan — accounted for 51 percent of the nation’s total foreclosure activity in 2010. Nevada, Arizona and Florida have the highest rates of foreclosure. One in 11 homes in Nevada (more than 9 percent of its housing units) received at least one foreclosure filing in 2010. This is the fourth consecutive year Nevada topped the list. Nevada’s foreclosure activity in December was up 14 percent from December 2009 There was some good news, too: Foreclosure filings in December, reported at 257,747, were down nearly 2 percent from November –- and down 26 percent from December 2009. That’s the biggest annual drop in foreclosure activity since RealtyTrac began publishing its foreclosure report in January 2005. States With the Highest Foreclosure Rates Nevada (9% of homes received at least one foreclosure filing in 2010) Arizona (5.72%) Florida (5.51%) California (4.08%) Utah (3.44%) Georgia (3.25%) Michigan (3%) Idaho (2.98%) Illinois (2.87%) Colorado (2.51%) Want to know what’s happening on the foreclosure front in Oregon? Here’s a closer look at the foreclosure market in Central Oregon during December. About the Author: Lisa Broadwater, GRI, CDPE is a Central Oregon-based real estate professional who specializes in listing and selling homes,...

More Borrowers Now Eligible for HAFA Program

A recent policy update to the Treasury Department’s HAFA (Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives) program will mean that more borrowers will be eligible to participate in the Obama Administration’s short sale program. Here’s a closer look at some of the changes: Servicers are no longer required to verify a borrower’s financial information. A borrower’s reason for relocation no longer must be related to employment ; also, there is no longer a minimum distance requirement. A borrower may have moved up to 12 months before certain dates in the HAFA process but may not have purchased another home. Servicers  aren’t required to determine if the borrower’s total monthly mortgage payment exceeds 31 percent of their gross income. However, borrowers will still be required to show a hardship. Servicers are now required to communicate approval, disapproval or a counter-offer no later than 30 calendar days after receiving the following:  an executed sales contract,  Alternative Request for Approval of Short Sale and a signed Hardship Affidavit. If an unsolicited borrower requests HAFA, the servicer has 30 calendar days to determine the borrower’s eligibility and, if eligible, send the borrower the Short Sale Agreement. HAFA will no longer impose a 6 percent  cap on payments to each subordinate lien holder. The $6,000 aggregate limit is still in effect. Servicers can initiate these changes immediately and must implement them by Feb. 1. Hopefully, these changes will mean more short sales approvals — it’s still rough going with a lot of the lenders. About the Author: Lisa Broadwater, GRI, CDPE is a Central Oregon-based real estate professional who specializes in listing and selling homes, especially in Sisters,...
Tumalo, Oregon Real Estate Market Report for October 2010

Tumalo, Oregon Real Estate Market Report for October 2010

Plenty of interesting twists in the Tumalo real estate market last month. After experiencing a sharp increase in September (from $650,000 to $699,000), the median sales price of Active listings in Tumalo decreased a bit in October, to $680,000. That’s still significantly higher than the median list price that held steady all summer ($650,000) and probably much higher than is likely to move many of these listings — the median price for the 56 Residential with Acreage listings that sold in Tumalo as of Oct. 31 is $340,625. That low number (which will probably come as a shock to a lot of Tumalo sellers) reflects the fact that 23 of the 56 sales –- more than 40 percent — were for less than $300,000; not a good sign for 25 percent of the current sellers, whose properties are listed for more than $1 million. Another factor bringing down the median sales price: 20 of the 56 sales this year were distressed properties: 18 bank-owned properties and 12 short sales. On the positive side, although the number of Closed sales in Tumalo was down this month (from seven to two), there are Three Contingent sales and six Pending sales, so it’s likely that November sales will bounce back (last year showed a similar pattern). Also, the number of Active listings decreased (from 83 in September to 76), as did the overall inventory (from a 16.06-month supply in September to a 14.5-month supply in October) and the number of million-dollar listings (from 26 in September to 21 in October). Meanwhile, the overall picture in Tumalo for October 2010 compared to this...

Distressed Market Update for Sisters, Oregon – Sept. 2010

Unlike much of Central Oregon (where distressed properties comprise up to 30 percent of the active real estate market), traditional sales continue to dominate the Sisters real estate market. Here’s the latest breakdown, as of Sept. 10, 2010: Of the 226 Active Residential listings, 90.7 percent are traditional sales (205 listings) and 9.3 percent are distressed properties (21 listings). Within the three main Residential categories (Single Family Residences, Multifamily Residences and Residential with Acreage), the breakdown varies only slightly: Of the 123 Active SFR listings, 111 are traditional sales, seven are short sales and five are bank-owned properties. Here, traditional sales account for 90 percent of the existing inventory and distressed properties account for 10 percent of the existing inventory. Of the 10 Active Multifamily listings, all 10 are traditional sales. Of the 93 Active Residential with Acreage listings, 84 are traditional sales, seven are short sales and two are bank-owned properties. Here again,traditional sales account for 90 percent of the existing inventory and distressed properties account for 10 percent of the existing inventory. Here’s a closer look at those statistics in chart form: That compares favorably to the statistics from January of this year, when 82 percent of the 171 Active Residential listings were traditional sales (141 listings), and 18 percent were distressed properties (30 listings). See the chart below for a detailed breakdown of statistics from January 2010. About the Author: Lisa Broadwater, GRI, CDPE s a Central Oregon-based real estate professional who specializes in listing and selling homes, especially in Sisters, Tumalo, Redmond and...