The Florida foreclosures inventory certainly isn't getting any smaller, as new statistics released by ForeclosureConnections.com recently showed that the state registered the second highest number of foreclosures in the nation during the month of January.
These statistics are keeping with the predictions of many housing market experts, as Florida's surplus of real estate is steadily dragging down property values. Due to widespread development and incredible investment buzz brought on by the low interest rates of the recent housing boom, many properties in Florida were grossly inflated in value, and investors and homebuyers alike took out extremely expensive mortgages. Now, almost half a decade later, a vast surplus of newly built properties and a market that is barely moving have led to steep declines in home values. Owners who cannot keep up with their soaring monthly payments in this case are stuck, and often times have no other option but foreclosure, as they cannot sell their properties for anywhere near what they owe on their mortgage.
This has led to Florida becoming one of the hottest markets for foreclosure investors in the country. From January of 2007 to January of 2008, Florida has experienced a 160% hike in the amount of foreclosures on the market. The greatest concentrations of these foreclosures exist in the southern half of the state, where development and investment were at their peak during the housing boom. Broward County, home to the city of Fort Lauderdale, has seen a 55% rise in its foreclosure rate in the past year, and Miami-Dade county has experienced an astonishing 125% increase. Still more interesting is the nearly 150% increase in foreclosures in wealthy Palm Beach county.
"Foreclosures in these areas are due mostly to investors not being able to sell their properties and not wanting to keep up with big mortgage payments until property values start rising again," commented Dan Estancia, an analyst with ForeclosureConnections.com. "Basically these properties are just going back into the foreclosure market, but what's interesting for investors is that they're just sitting there too. No one is buying at auction, and most of them just go back to the lenders."
This is presenting a host of buying opportunities for investors, since getting a great deal in this sort of flooded market can be quite easy. With banks and government lenders overloaded with properties that did not sell at auction, ForeclosureConnections.com reports that many buyers are finding savings on bank foreclosure properties by going straight to the bank source and inquiring about what's available. The same goes for government homes agencies in the area, such as the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Federal Housing Authority.
Florida's market is poised to stay atop the foreclosure rate list for quite some time, but with the market at its peak, it could be an excellent time for homebuyers and investors looking for savings to cash in on Florida foreclosures.
ForeclosureConnections.com is a leading research and listings firm that focuses on tracking the foreclosure scene across the United States. Made up of real estate investors, agents and experienced industry experts, ForeclosureConnections.com brings clients listings, investment news and advice, and all the latest information on foreclosures occurring in many different regions.