Economic Recovery

The great recession of 2007-2013 is now well in the past with just a few lingering elements. I thought it would be helpful to share some insight on how this may affect your decision to buy or to sell a home.

Is it time to become a homeowner, again?

I am now seeing folks who lost their home to foreclosure, shortsale, or perhaps went through a bankruptcy getting back into home ownership. This chart was given to me by Ginny Schider, a wonderful loan officer at Pacific Residential Mortgage (503-319-3646). It shows the wait time necessary before you can be eligible for a new mortgage if you have experienced one of these events:

Loan Program Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Shortsales Foreclosure
or Deed-in-liew
Fannie Mae
Insured Loans 4 years from discharge 2 years from discharge 4 years 7 years
4 years from dismissal
Feddie Mac 5 years 5 years 4 years 7 years
Insured Loans
FHA 2 years from discharge 12 months acceptable 3 years 3 years
payment history
USDA 3 years 3 years 3 years 3 years
VA 2 years from discharge 2 years from discharge 2 years 2 years

I have worked with folks in this situation and I’ve got to say it one of the most rewarding experiences I’ve ever had as a Realtor. Seeing folks who have been through hard times getting back on their feet and moving forward with the ability to rebuild their lives.

Still a few lingering foreclosures and shortsales
It’s referred to as the shadow inventory. These are distressed properties that banks have been holding onto. They simply did not want to release too many foreclosures all at the same time. Foreclosures and shortsales tend to sell for less. So if too many happen all at once, they tend to cause declining home values. Banks addressed this by not putting them on the market. Some are vacant homes that are just sitting in neighborhoods because the house has already been foreclosed upon. Others are home owners who know their house is in foreclosure, but the bank has not finalized it. I am aware of people who have been living in homes, not making mortgage payments, but not being kicked out, for years. I believe banks choose to allow this to happen because if the person in default is still in the house, then the house is being heated and watched over. It is simply safer for the property.

I don’t know how long it will take for these hold out foreclosures to be sold, but they are continuing to trickle onto the market.

Shortsales have become much less common. This is because as values have come back, many home owners are now no longer under water with a mortgage that is greater than their home value. This is not to say that they are not still happening. It is simply less frequent.

So, while the recession is technically over, effects from it are still happening. And if you are someone who went through a bankruptcy, foreclosure, or shortsale, the good news is you may be approaching the time when you can become a home owner again. Don’t hesitate to give Whitney, Linda, or myself a call if you need a good Realtor!