foreclosure-48120_1280By Jason Boone

Prospective homebuyers still often ask me about foreclosures. Certainly the question makes sense. In the wake of the housing bust, foreclosed properties dominated the real estate market, both in Bend and throughout the nation.

For many bargain hunters, foreclosed homes became an obvious avenue to buy a home at below market rates.

Of course, much has changed in the market since the depths of the Great Recession. The market in Bend continues to show strength, and home values continue to rise.

The February median sales price — the midpoint in which half the homes in Bend sold for more and half for less — landed at $331,660. That was up from $317,450 in January and $289,900 in February 2015.

In such an environment, foreclosures have become increasingly rare. After all, homeowners who can no longer afford their mortgages have a fair chance to sell their home for as much or more than what they owe the bank. In addition, by most reports tightened lending rules in place for more than three years have led to fewer risky mortgages.

The difference in the market is striking.

In the trough of the recession in 2009, the sale of Real Estate Owned, or REO, homes made up 36 percent of all home sales in Bend. In 2010, REO sales made up 35 percent of Bend sales. Today, such sales are a mere fraction of the market.

Year Total Single-Family Home Sales in Bend Total REO Sales REO Market Percentage
2007 1,660 0 0%
2008 1,222 15 1%
2009 1,721 622 36%
2010 1,913 669 35%
2011 1,942 501 26%
2012 2,298 378 16%
2013 2,298 86 3%
2014 2,522 77 3%
2015 2,786 91 3%

Source: Skjersaa Group

That is not to say that it is impossible for bargain-hunting buyers to find a foreclosed home. Sales of a foreclosed homes still make up about 3 percent of all home sales. But the process requires patience and a very keen eye. In addition, buying a foreclosed home has always come with risk.

Prospective homebuyers would be wise to consider whether or not searching for foreclosed home is worth the effort.

Knowing how such information applies for each buyer takes expertise. I can help navigate the market and find the perfect Bend, Oregon home.

To learn more about the Bend real estate market, get started with listing your Bend home, or to view area homes contact me call (541) 383-1426, or visit Bend Property Search to connect with me through my website.