March 2016

in 2015, although that was down from 15.2 percent in 2014.

have used an escalation clause. That means I put an addendum together that says I will pay $500 over your highest price, but my limit is here. Also a letter from the new buyer to the seller.”

Banking on High Demand for REOs

Grubb, the investor with Bulldog Capital Partners, said that the improving market means banks are more willing take back properties in default as REO (real estate owned) rather than sell them via short sale or at the foreclosure auction. “We’re still seeing foreclosures, but looking at what’s coming through the pipeline, the banks are changing their models … for the most part the banks look at this as an REO-friendly market,” he said, noting that many of the banks have voluntarily switched to using the judicial foreclosure process because of a law requiring mediation on non-judicial foreclosures that passed several years ago — although that law has since been modified to require mediation for both judicial and non-judicial foreclosures. “The banks are comfortable with the market and comfortable with taking REO.” Although overall foreclosure activity in Portland declined through the first two months of 2016 compared to a year ago, REOs increased during that same time period, according to RealtyTrac data. There were 197 properties repossessed by lenders in February in the metro area, up 30 percent from the

Some Deals with Short Sales

Savage said that short sales lingering from the market downturn are also another good option for patient buyers to get their foot in the door of the competitive Portland market. “I’ve got one (short sale) right now that I wrote up in November and I’m waiting to hear from the bank,” said Savage, who honed her short sale negotiating skills during the housing downturn following the Great Recession and is still open to short sales now even though many agents avoid them. “I like them. I don’t mind. “And in this market we are still getting some deals with short sales,” she continued. “They are just coming to light. A lot of people who bought when the market was really hot. It’s taken them this long to figure out what to do. It’s a process; it takes years for that to happen.” RealtyTrac data shows distressed sales — including short sales as well as sells of homes in foreclosure and bank-owned properties — still accounted for 13.4 percent of all home sales

Continued Next Page

SOURCE: RealtyTrac


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