As news around the country continues to stream in concerning foreclosures on the rise, the Tallahassee real estate market has stayed "under the radar" with only 6 properties on average being foreclosed upon each month. In order to get a better feel for distressed properties in Tallahassee, we have to look at Lis Pendens filed (the legal action that begins the foreclosure process) and compare that information with the past.
Every month, we update the Tallahassee Foreclosure Review in order to study the changing landscape of distressed properties in Tallahassee. These include foreclosures, lis pendens, and short sales. Lately, we have seen the trend of lis pendens filings increase in a major way, but foreclosures is no different than what we recorded in 2003.
Tallahassee Foreclosures See Little Change Over Past 6 Years
The following real estate graph shows that while new foreclosures are trending up (blue line), they are really only back to the level we saw in 2003.
Tallahassee Lis Pendens Filings Trending Up
Contrary to how relaxed Tallahassee foreclosures appear to be conducted, lis pendens filings in Tallahassee are growing at an alarming rate. This is something that should be monitored on a regular basis by anybody who has a stake in the Tallahassee real estate market, as a slew of distressed properties hitting the market will only bring property values down.
Tallahassee Subdivisions Served With Most Lis Pendens
I was curious to see if one neighborhood (or two, or three, etc.) was getting hit with more lis pendens than another so I pulled a 13 month report on all lis pendens filed in Tallahassee and graphed the results by subdivision. Woodbriar and Killearn Estates lead the field with over 40 filings each (more than 3 per month!), but it appears that Tallahassee lis pendens filings are spread out all over our area.
Tallahassee Short Sales Solve Distressed Property Problem
Apparently, banks are taking their time with the foreclosure process, hoping to work-out a short sale (home is sold and the proceeds are less than what is required to satisfy all liens) and receive less than the full mortgage balance rather than push through the costly process of foreclosure. We are seeing a very active short sale market in Tallahassee, where in the past they seldom seemed to surface.
If you or somebody you know is an owner of a distressed property in Tallahassee, look at all of your options. Foreclosure rarely works to the benefit of the bank, so an open dialogue with the lender plus a willingness to consider all options (such as short sale, leasing, forbearance, loan modification) is the best way to work through a tough situation.
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Joe Manausa, MBA is a 26 year veteran of real estate brokerage in Tallahassee, Florida and has owned and managed his own company since 1992. He is a daily blogger with content that focuses on real estate analytics and providing his clients with a tactical advantage in today's challenging market.