The number of foreclosure filings around the country is decreasing, according to CNN-Money Magazine. Nationwide, foreclosures are down by 44 percent from August, 2012 to August, 2013. That’s the fewest number of filings since the foreclosure crisis began in 2005. According to RealtyTrac’s Darren Bloomquist, “The foreclosure floodwaters have receded in most parts of the country.” He credits soaring home prices and fewer underwater homeowners for the turnaround.
Foreclosures in Missouri
Missouri is following the national trend in regards to fewer home foreclosures. In fact, the number of foreclosures filed in Kansas City in August 2013 was 39 percent less than the August 2012 filings, and the number of filings in the entire state of Missouri dropped by 41 percent. However, there’s still work to do. Missouri ranks 31st among U.S. states in the number of August foreclosure filings and, as of August 2013, more than 1,400 Missouri homes were in trouble. (Nevada, Florida and Ohio lead the nation in the number of foreclosure filings.)
However, Forbes Magazine cautions that the foreclosure crisis is not over yet, even though the number of filings has decreased. They estimate that as many as 26 percent of American homeowners are still underwater with their mortgages, (meaning that they owe more on their mortgage than the current valuation of their home), and that more than 500,000 homes will still be repossessed by banks by the end of 2013.
Fewer home foreclosures are a good sign for existing homeowners and for the U.S. economy in general. However, it’s also a sign that there are fewer “bargain basement” home prices available to buyers. If you are considering buying a home, now is a good time to act. Fewer home foreclosures, rising home prices and shrinking inventory in most U.S. cities, including Kansas City, are gradually turning the buyers’ market of the last several years into a sellers’ market.