Foreclosures Down, But Homes Still Empty Across DFW

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Nicholaas Engelhard walked into a Dallas County home looking for a bargain.  It was a spacious four-bedroom, in a nice neighborhood, and it was a foreclosure.  Twelve percent of the homes on the market right now are, said his realtor Barbara Van Poole.

Year end reports from Addison based Foreclosure Listing Service show that trend is changing.

There were more than 7,400 fewer foreclosures in the Dallas Fort Worth metro area last year than in 2010, a 12 percent drop.  Commercial postings were down, 14 percent.

That follows more than a decade of foreclosure increases in the region.

Home foreclosures are now at their lowest level in three years.  That doesn’t necessarily mean the homes with the notices on the windows, and the sale signs out front are going to start disappearing from neighborhoods.

The house Engelhard toured is a perfect example. The garish colors on the wall were one thing. But the cracks he could fit his hand into on the walls, caused by foundation problems were an entirely different problem.

The flooring was old and stained. The décor was outdated.  “You just have to plug in 10 to 15 thousand dollars right out of your pocket,” he said.  “And that is brutal to your bottom line.”

Banks often still have an asking price that doesn’t match the condition the home is in, said Van Poole.  “You wind up with all kinds of issues,” she said. “They’re still trying to get top dollar for the home, and now the home is continuing to be worth less and less.”

Engelhard, who tours homes a few times a week looked for investments, said most of them are in similar condition and he often ends up walking away.

It can take months Van Poole said, for banks to come around and realize they will have to lower their asking price to get a buyer to commit.

She also said she has also seen lenders agreeing to more short sales recently, cutting down on the number of homes they have to foreclose on.

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  • susan

    there are some older area of dallas where people are buying an older home (1950’s vintage), tearing it down and building a “mcmansion” on the property..go over to the area around white rock lake and you will see looks strange because you will have 2 “mcmansions”, then one or two of the old ranch style (not fancy new) and then more “mcmansions”..its kind of sad in a way…people want the area and the lots, but prefer to tear down and build new rather than refurbish..i am not sure how many of those homes are foreclosures,but i will bet at least a few are..

  • Bill Haley

    “… cutting down on the number of homes they have to foreclose on.” So Jason, have you no one to edit your poor, redundant sentence construction? How many times should one say “on” in that statement?

  • Grandpa Dallas

    Dodd-Frank forced lenders to loan to absolutely anyone. When these borrowers could not service their loans, the lenders had to keep paying taxes and insurance while these borrowers lived in the houses for free. Many did not take care of their free housing. I do short sales. I see people who haven’t made house payments since 2009 and who whine about how mean the bank is. Banks have to recover assets or there will be no money to loan to anyone. The banks are not the bad guys. They did what they were forced to do. No one forced these people to borrow money. No one is entitled to a home of their own. If you want luxuries, go earn them.

    The worst part is all the people who signed contracts to repay money they were loaned to purchase homes. When times get tough, they think that they no longer ought to fulfill their responsibilities.

    If banks don’t get repaid, they don’t have money to loan to anyone. And if banks don’t make money, their stockholders will bail taking even more money out of the home-lending market.

    A corporation is a voluntary association of individuals who invest their funds to create goods and services to be offered on the market. The market decides whether these goods and services are worth buying. No one is forced into a corporation and no one is forced to purchase a good….well except for Obamacare…but the libs are happy with that.

    People who rant against corporations simply do not understand the simplest concepts of economics or psychology. If you think you are oppressed by corporations, the most likely explanation is that you are the cause of your own problems…either intentionally or otherwise.

    Corporations are not out the get you. You just aren’t that important.

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