Zombie foreclosures, they are out there, lurking in every neighborhood. Silently sitting, waiting, waiting, waiting, waiting! Soon to snare the unwitting seller who waits to long to place their home on the market and sell before the next dip in the housing market!
What is a zombie house? It is the shell of a house sitting in your neighborhood, lifeless, empty, since the family that used to reside there left months or years ago. A zombie house is abandoned and a nuisance: HOA fee's and taxes unpaid, lawns not mowed, paint peeling, fence falling down and unwanted, even by the mortgage owner.
Two recent articles bring home this point, one by Barbara Liston in MSN Money. More than 300,000 homes are foreclosed "zombies", states that as the title suggests, over 300,000 homes across the USA have been abandoned by their owners and sit empty. Some have pending foreclosure proceedings being actively pursued, others are in limbo as banks are unable to produce the proper documentation to legally file and begin the foreclosure process.
Unfortunately, Florida leads the way with over 90,000 pending foreclosures and zombie homes, representing 30% of all foreclosure actions in America.
Teresa Mears, in MSN Real Estate, writes "Foreclosures up 9% over last year"! This is a significant number, representing approximately 1.5 million homes in the first quarter of 2013 as opposed to 1.3 million homes at this time in 2012.
Fortunately, Florida was beat out for the number one state with unlisted foreclosure inventory by New York, which had an increase of 129%. Florida was merely 2nd, with an 82% increase.
Each of these articles indicate that there is a large number of homes that eventually will have to be sold on the open market. When they are finally foreclosed and made available for sale, their added numbers to the current active inventory will certainly impact the housing shortage and possibly cause a slow down in the recent price gains we have been seeing.
Time will tell!