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Bend Oregon Mortgage Defaults Skyrocket

Jul 18, 2008
The Bend Bulletin reported Sunday that the Bend Oregon real estate market is not doing well. There were 788 notices of default filed in Deschutes County for the first six months of 2008.

A notice of default occurs when the mortgage lender files a notice of foreclosure. Lenders generally file notices after a borrower is two to three months behind on their payments. As foreclosures increase lenders tend to file notices sooner to try and cut their losses.

There were 192 notices of default filed in 2007 over the same time period. This year's defaults show a 410% increase over last year. Prices continue to fall as more bank repossessions come on the market.

The Bulletin reported that 75% of the notices of default filed this year were on homes purchases made in 2006 and 2007 at the peak of the Bend Oregon real estate market. Not all of these notices of default will result in foreclosure. Borrows have an opportunity to bring the loans current. If they do the default notice and foreclosure proceedings will be stopped.

Most homes purchased in 2006 and 2007 are currently worth substantially less now than they were then. If a purchaser bought a home during these years with nothing or little down they cannot sell their homes and pay off the mortgage.

Some lending institutions are allowing owners to sell their homes for less than they owe. The bank takes the loss. These are known as "short sales".

If a loan is not brought current after 90 days of the notice of default the lender will put the home up for auction on the court house steps. If the home isn't sold for more that the delinquency the bank takes possession. Thus the name "bank repo".

The increasing number of short sales and bank foreclosures will add additional lower priced homes to the market and continue the price decreases we are currently experiencing. Prices are currently down approximately 23% from this time last year.

The latest market report for Bend showed that the median prices of homes rose slightly for June 2008 over June 2007. Statistics can be tricky though. There were 22 homes sold over $500,000 and one of those homes was a sale for $3,000,000 during that period. Naturally that increased the median price substantially. The average price per square foot was up also.

The fact is our prices are still falling and will continue to fall until bank foreclosures slow down considerably. A decrease in notices of default will predict a decrease in Bend foreclosures. The current amount of notices of default guarantee more bank repos will be hitting the market this year.

Bank repos can sometimes be a good buy. The banks have to sell them to get them off of their books. Country Wide and other lenders made mortgage loans of question over the past several years and they are now coming back to haunt the banking industry.

There are currently many homes on the market in Bend that are over priced. The values continue to fall and people won't lower their prices to market value to sell their property.

Inflation is up. Gas prices are up. Unemployment is up and it seems that interest rates are inching up also. I don't think the Federal government will let interest rates get too high. But you never know. They raised them to 16% in 1981.

Keep an eye on mortgage notices of defaults and they will tell you where the real estate market is headed in Bend Oregon.
About the Author
Jim Johnson has lived in Bend Oregon since 1981. Call 541-389-4511 or see his web site http://www.bendoregonrealestateexpert.com See more Bend Oregon information at http://bendoregonrealestateexpert.com/bendoregon.asp
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