All Cash Sales Share at New High in November

RealtyTrac®‘s November 2013 U.S. Residential & Foreclosure Sales Report shows that U.S. residential properties, including single family homes, condominiums and town homes, sold at an estimated annual pace of 5,146,565 in November, a less than 1 percent increase from a revised pace of 5,128,034 in October and up 10 percent from November 2012.

Annualized sale volume declined from the previous month in 18 states and was down from a year ago in four states: California (down 14 percent), Arizona (down 12 percent), Nevada (down 9 percent), and Rhode Island (down 4 percent). Annualized sales volume declined from a year ago in 14 of the nation’s 50 largest metros, including seven California metros, two metros in both Arizona and New York, along with Las Vegas, New Haven, Conn., and Portland, Ore.

The national median sales price of all residential properties — including both distressed and non-distressed sales — was $169,000 in November, up 1 percent from October and up 7 percent from November 2012, the 19th consecutive month median home prices have increased on an annualized basis.

The median price of a distressed residential property — in foreclosure or bank owned — was $110,500 in November, 39 percent below the median price of $181,500 for a non-distressed residential property.

“The housing market recovery continued to be driven by investors and other cash purchasers in November,” said Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac. “Lenders are taking advantage of this environment to unload more of their bank-owned inventory and in-foreclosure inventory at the foreclosure auction. But as the backlog of distressed inventory available dries up in many of the markets with the most efficient foreclosure processes — namely California, Arizona and Nevada, with Georgia not far behind — overall sales volume is declining and will continue to do so until more non-distressed sellers enter the market.”

Key findings from the report:

  • All-cash purchases accounted for 42.0 percent of all residential property sales in November, up from 38.8 percent in October and also up from a year ago to the highest level since RealtyTrac began tracking all-cash purchases in January 2011.
  • States with the highest percentage of cash sales were Florida (62.7 percent), Georgia (51.3 percent), Nevada (51.0 percent), South Carolina (50.3 percent), and Michigan (49.0 percent).
  • Institutional investor purchases represented 7.7 percent of all residential property sales in November, up from 7.1 percent in October and up from 6.3 percent a year ago.
  • Markets with the highest share of institutional investor purchases included Columbus, Ohio, Phoenix, Atlanta, Jacksonville, Fla., and Cape Coral-Fort Myers, Fla.
  •  Sales of bank-owned homes (REO) accounted for 10.0 percent of all residential property sales in November, up from 9.1 percent in October and 9.4 percent a year ago. November marked the third consecutive month where REO sales increased from the previous month.
  • Metro areas where REO sales accounted for at least 20 percent of all sales and increased from a year ago included Stockton, Calif., Las Vegas, Cleveland, Riverside-San Bernardino, Calif., and Phoenix.
  • Sales to third-party investors at the foreclosure auction represented 1.3 percent of all residential property sales in November, up from 0.8 percent of sales in both the previous month and a year ago to the highest level since RealtyTrac began tracking third party foreclosure auction sales in January 2011.
  • Metro areas with the highest share of third party foreclosure auction sales were Miami (4.0 percent), Atlanta (3.9 percent), Jacksonville, Fla. (3.9 percent), Orlando (3.6 percent), and Las Vegas (3.6 percent).
  • Short sales represented 5.6 percent of all residential property sales in November, up from 5.4 percent the previous month but down from 6.5 percent in November 2012.
  •  States with the highest percentage of short sales were Nevada (16.6 percent), Florida (14.2 percent), Illinois (8.8 percent), Maryland (8.6 percent) and New Jersey (7.1 percent).
  • Markets with the biggest annual increase in median prices included Detroit (up 39 percent), Sacramento (up 30 percent), Atlanta (up 28 percent), and San Francisco (up 27 percent).

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