The big headline on the real estate front today put a spotlight on foreclosures. Atlanta, they say, has been particularly hard hit. According to Marketwatch:
Houston, Seattle and Atlanta saw the biggest increases among the 20 largest metro areas. Foreclosures jumped 26% in the Houston area in 2010, compared with 2009, according to RealtyTrac. In Seattle, foreclosures rose 23% and in Atlanta, they were up 21%.
In the short term, the results of this headline won’t amount to much outside of a raise for RealtyTrac’s PR team. Within 48 hours, the storm will calm down and the next headline will take center stage. In the interim… a little food for thought:
- In 2010, there were 24 single family homes that sold in Inman Park. One was a foreclosure (4% of all sales).
- In 2010, there were 141 single family homes that sold in the Sarah Smith Elementary School district in North Buckhead. 20 were foreclosures (14% of all sales), five of which were in the same subdivision, selling for over $1,000,000.
- In 2010, there were 124 townhomes/condominiums that sold in Clayton County. 46 were foreclosures (37% of all sales).
The moral of the story: ignore the headlines. 4%, 14% and 37% of market share are radically different numbers, representing radically different neighborhoods. If you’re thinking about buying or selling a home in the near future (or are just curious about market trends), pay little attention to trends or conditions that may not have any bearing on your next move. The macro may be important, but for individual buyers and sellers it’s about the micro.
* All data based on FMLS 1/1/10-12/31/10