Foreclosures made up roughly one-third of all home sales this spring. While that's a smaller share of sales from the previous quarter, it's six times the percentage of foreclosures in a healthy housing market.
Foreclosure sales, which include homes purchased after they received a notice of default or that were repossessed by lenders, accounted for 31 percent of the market in the April-June quarter, foreclosure listing firm RealtyTrac Inc. said, according to NPR.org.
"Over 60 percent of homebuyers are looking for a property that's in foreclosure, and so the buyers really know that there are bargains out there to be had," said Rick Charga, senior vice president.
The more sales, the better, he said. "We need the percentages of sales to be high, we need the number of these properties sold to be high, so that we can get these properties out of inventory and let the housing market prices start to climb back up," Charga said.
Foreclosures' share of the market would likely have been larger this spring if not for a state and federal investigation into faulty paperwork by banks and servicers. The probe has led many banks to delay foreclosure sales. Once that is complete, foreclosures will likely surge later this year.
As a slice of all home purchases, foreclosure sales peaked two years ago at 37.4 percent. In the second quarter, they declined from 36 percent in the January-March period.
For more information: www.npr.org/2011/08/25/139941458/foreclosures-a-third-of-sales-mortgage-rates-rise