|Underwater homes making their way back to the surface
Over the last 29 months, the housing market has made significant strides in the right direction with two consecutive years of double-digit appreciation.
Are we back to where we started? No. Are we heading in the right direction? Yes.
With foreclosures taking a backseat to conventional sales for the first time in years, homeowners that were upside down as much as 20 percent are now seeing equity in their homes; in some cases, for the first time since purchasing their property.
This doesn’t mean there aren’t still distressed properties in the area or there still isn’t a considerable amount of homes upside down, but it does mean some financially strapped homeowners that were looking at losing their homes to foreclosure or a short sale may be able to sell their homes now and not have it burden their credit history or keep them from buying again down the line if they wanted to re-enter the housing market again.
Most analysts are convinced we are still three years from prices reaching their all-time high values of 2007.
As anxious as we are to see that day come, we need to have patience as to not recreate the events that led to our previous meltdown.
Responsible lending practices, independent appraisal service companies and verifiable buyer financials have helped us secure a healthier market going forward. We just need to take it slow.
Ken Schrier is a licensed Realtor working locally for RE/MAX PROs. He works with Buyers and Sellers throughout Sonoma County but focuses especially on the Rohnert Park / Cotati area. He can be reached at www.KenSchrier.com or by cell at (707) 529-4819.