Palm Coast and Flagler’s Foreclosure Future Not so Bleak

The number of foreclosure filings on the decline while the number of foreclosure sales is increasing – both good signs. There are fewer homes entering the process and more coming out the other end.

Palm Coast, FL – August 5, 2010 – Before housing prices can rise, the number of distressed properties has to come down. Recent trends in Flagler County foreclosures indicate the local housing market is making progress on its slow journey to recovery. The number of foreclosure filings is on the decline while the number of foreclosure sales is on the increase – both good signs. There are fewer homes entering the process and more coming out the other end.
Numbers tell the story, but each in its own way and in its own time. For instance, Flagler’s housing bust was first evident when the number of homes sold monthly began to drop quickly after peaking at 338 in June 2005. Buyers were rapidly disappearing but the momentum for rising prices was strong. It took months before sellers began to realize that it wasn’t a sellers’ market any more. Median selling price actually rose over the next 6 months by 17.5%. Median selling price did not return to June ’05 levels until spring ’07.
The cycle began when buyers retreated. The number of closed sales began to drop. Median selling price lagged declining sales by several months. Sellers, ever optimistic and focused on listing prices, are always the last to notice a downturn. You can’t hear bad news when you are wearing your "happy ears."
Flagler County Foreclosure Statistics from
It wasn’t long after sales headed down before foreclosure filings began to rise. If lenders had been more prepared, foreclosures probably would have risen more quickly. They are now on the decline.
Foreclosure sales (auctions) are the last step in the foreclosure cycle. It’s the lenders last resort when loan modifications or short sales don’t work out. But once lenders own foreclosed property, they price it aggressively to get it off their books. Lender-owned listings represent real opportunities for buyers. They are typically only on the market a few days before they go under contract, often closing within weeks.
The numbers:
·         Home Sales High – 338 – June 2005
·         Home Sales Low – 51 – January 2008 (now rising)
·         Median Selling Price High – $259,950 – December 2005
·         Median Selling Price Low – $126,000 – March 2010 (slight increase since)
·         Foreclosure Filings High – 303 – December 2009 (declining)
·         Foreclosure Sales – Rising this year
Among the mass of statistics, it’s not easy to spot trends, but they are there if you know where to look.
Note: This story also appeared in today’s edition of Palm Coast Observer.
1 reply
  1. Ted Lesher
    Ted Lesher says:

    Behind the filings lay the delinquencies

    Thanks. Great information! But I am still very pessimistic about the trend of the housing market…I think the number of people three months or more delinquent on mortgage payments is more indicative of the huge backload of probable foreclosures than the actual filings data.

    The banks are carefully controlling the spigot on Lis Pendens filings while waiting for our government to protect them from the write-offs they will have to take.

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