According to RealtyTrac's data, January saw a 33% year-over-year increase in pre-foreclosure sales, with annual increases in 32 states, including Georgia (a 113% increase), Michigan (a 90% increase) and California (a 52% increase). Short sales outnumbered bank-owned property sales in 12 states, including Utah, California, Arizona, Florida, Indiana, Colorado, New York and New Jersey.
In addition to the growing numbers of short sales, RealtyTrac also determined other trends pointing to a housing market climate that is becoming more favorable to successful short sales. The average pre-foreclosure sales price in January was $174,120, down 4% from December and down 10% from January 2011. RealtyTrac states this is evidence that lenders are starting to approve more aggressively priced short sales.
‘Short sales have long held great promise as a market-based solution to the nation's foreclosure problem, but short sales transactions over the past three years have actually declined after peaking in the first quarter of 2009,’ says Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac. ‘January foreclosure sales numbers, along with first-quarter foreclosure activity, strongly indicate that downward trend is ending, and we believe 2012 could be a record year for short sales.’
RealtyTrac's data is now available online.