Lake Charleston homes for sale


Home price trend…Florida job prospects…

CNN: Unanticipated home price declines in November.

case_shiller_Nov_2011 NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Home prices posted a steep, month-over-month drop in November, falling 1.3%, according to the latest S&P/Case-Shiller 20-city report. Prices fell in 19 of the 20 cities the index covers.

Prices are down 3.7% from a year ago, and off 32.8% since they peaked in the summer of 2006. The index is currently only 0.6% above its March, 2011 low. "Despite continued low interest rates and better real GDP growth in the fourth quarter, home prices continue to fall," said David Blitzer, spokesman for S&P.

The drop in home prices was more than housing bear Peter Morici, professor at the University of Maryland Smith School of Business, anticipated. He had forecast a 0.8% drop. "We've had more robust sales activity in the housing market lately," he said.

Morici thinks recent home price weakness stems at least partially from the fact that more sellers have accepted the weak market conditions and are putting their homes up for sale. Retirees and other home owners had postponed sales, trying to wait out the decline. "Sooner or later, you have to get rid of that house," he said.

Most difficult place to find another job? Florida!

Jobs NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- If you lose your job in Florida, chances are you won't find another one any time soon.

The Sunshine State has the highest rate of long-term unemployment in the nation. Some 53% of jobless Floridians were out of work for more than six months in 2011, according to Brookings' Hamilton Project, which crunched Census data

"During the boom, the Florida economy was going gangbusters," said Sean Snaith, economics professor at the University of Central Florida. "We lost hundreds of thousands of jobs."

Although the market is starting to loosen up, there are four jobseekers for every open position in Florida, said Mason Jackson, chief executive of the WorkForce One career center in Fort Lauderdale. Businesses are still hesitant to hire because of continued uncertainty in the economy. "If we filled every job we could find, 75% would still be unemployed," Jackson said.

The housing market continues to weigh on the Florida economy and its job market. More than one in five borrowers are behind in payments, while 44% of homeowners owe more than their property is worth.

This prevents homeowners from moving away to look for work, said Tony Villamil, dean of St. Thomas University's School of Business in Miami.

"They are locked in their homes," he said.


To any home owners reading this: If selling your home may be a consideration in the next 36 months, we should discuss the information contained in the two news releases, above, and the other housing and economic factors that may have an impact on your present and future real estate plans.

Call me directly at 561-602-1258

Thanks for reading…Steve Jackson


––For Every Two Homes Available for Sale, There Is One “In The Shadows”––


shadow inventory CoreLogic® (NYSE: CLGX), a leading provider of information, analytics and business services, reported today that the current residential shadow inventory as of October 2011 remained at 1.6 million units, representing a supply of 5 months. This was down from October 2010, when shadow inventory stood at 1.9 million units, or 7-months’ supply, but approximately the same level as reported in July 2011. Currently, the flow of new seriously delinquent loans into the shadow inventory has been offset by the roughly equal flow of distressed (short and real estate owned) sales.

CoreLogic estimates the current stock of properties in the shadow inventory, also known as pending supply, by calculating the number of distressed properties not currently listed on multiple listing services (MLSs) that are seriously delinquent (90 days or more), in foreclosure and real estate owned (REO) by lenders. Transition rates of “delinquency to foreclosure” and “foreclosure to REO” are used to identify the currently distressed non-listed properties most likely to become REO properties. Properties that are not yet delinquent but may become delinquent in the future are not included in the estimate of the current shadow inventory. Shadow inventory is typically not included in the official metrics of unsold inventory.

Data Highlights:

  • As of October 2011, shadow inventory remained at 1.6 million units, or 5-months’ supply and represented half of the 3 million properties currently seriously delinquent, in foreclosure or in REO.
  • Of the 1.6 million properties currently in the shadow inventory (Figures 1 and 2), 770,000 units are seriously delinquent (2.5-months’ supply), 430,000 are in some stage of foreclosure (1.4-months’ supply) and 370,000 are already in REO (1.2-months’ supply).
  • Florida, California and Illinois account for more than a third of the shadow inventory. The top six states, which would also include New York, Texas and New Jersey, account for half of the shadow inventory.
  • The shadow inventory is approximately four times higher than its low point (380,000 properties) at the peak of the housing bubble in mid-2006. A healthy housing market should have less than one-month’s supply of shadow inventory, which would be an easily absorbed stock of distressed assets with little or no discernable impact on house prices, unless the inventory was geographically concentrated.
  • Despite 3 million distressed sales since January 2009, a period when home prices were declining at their fastest rate, the shadow inventory in October 2011 is at the same level as January 2009.
  • Because shadow inventory is often concentrated in suburban and exurban submarkets, where distressed sales compete with new construction sales, it is one of the reasons why new home sales continue to be weak. In normal times, new home sales account for 12 percent of all sales, but they are currently running at 7 percent of all sales.
  • Based on current estimates of the visible inventory (both distressed and non-distressed), the shadow inventory is approximately half of all visible inventory listings. For every two homes available for sale, there is one home in the “shadows”

“The shadow inventory overhang is a large impediment to the improvement in the housing market because it puts downward pressure on home prices, which hurts home sales and building activity while encouraging strategic defaults,” said Mark Fleming, chief economist for CoreLogic.

The full report can be found at


I do follow CoreLogic reporting every month…however, there are other, credible, estimated of the shadow inventory of 3-4 times what CoreLogic reports. And this is what is going to keep our values from increasing any time soon.

Thanks for reading…Steve Jackson

Call me directly at 561-602-1258


Freddie Mac offers help for the unemployed

Just this afternoon I received an email bulletin from Freddie Mac that may give some relief to unemployed individuals having difficulty making payments on a Freddie Mac loan.
Here is a brief overview with a link to the actual Freddie Mac document I received:

Freddie Mac, (Bulletin 2010-17), is introducing new forbearance requirements to provide a “short-term unemployment forbearance” relief option to assist Borrowers who are unable to make their Mortgage payment due to unemployment.

In addition, Freddie Mac is introducing an “extended unemployment forbearance” relief option to provide an extension of the forbearance period if such Borrowers have not regained employment after the short-term forbearance period has ended. Including these additional relief options in our loss mitigation tool kit gives unemployed Borrowers an opportunity to retain homeownership by providing Mortgage payment relief while they seek re-employment.

Servicers will have delegated authority to approve eligible Borrowers for a short-term unemployment forbearance period of six months during which time the monthly Mortgage payment is either suspended or reduced.

If the Borrower remains unemployed at the end of the short-term unemployment forbearance period, the Servicer must consider the Borrower for extended unemployment forbearance in accordance with the Guide.

If the Borrower meets the eligibility criteria for extended unemployment forbearance, the Servicer must obtain Freddie Mac’s written approval before entering into an extended unemployment forbearance plan with the Borrower.

EFFECTIVE DATE: Changes announced in this Bulletin are effective February 1, 2012 for all new Borrower evaluations for an alternative to foreclosure. However, Servicers may begin implementing the unemployment forbearance relief options earlier for all new requests for assistance in which an eligible Borrower’s hardship is unemployment.

If you have any question about Freddie Macs new plan, above, or any other questions regarding foreclosure alternatives, please pick up the phone and call me directly at 561-602-1258...or send me an email

Thanks for reading my blog…Steve Jackson



happy-new-Year To help you celebrate and reflect here is a collection of quotes to start the new year.

In the New Year, may your right hand always be stretched out in friendship, but never in want. -Irish toast

Your Merry Christmas may depend on what others do for you … but your Happy New Year depends on what you do for others. -Author unknown

Your success and happiness lies in you. Resolve to keep happy, and your joy and you shall form an invincible host against difficulties. Helen Keller

We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year’s Day. Edith Lovejoy Pierce

One resolution I have made, and try always to keep, is this: To rise above the little things. John Burroughs

We spend January 1 walking through our lives, room by room, drawing up a list of work to be done, cracks to be patched. Maybe this year, to balance the list, we ought to walk through the rooms of our lives…not looking for flaws, but for potential. Ellen Goodman

Be always at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let each new year find you a better man. Benjamin Franklin

May the best of this year be the worst of next. Unknown

Resolve to make at least one person happy every day, and then in ten years you may have made three thousand, six hundred and fifty persons happy, or brightened a small town by your contribution to the fund of general enjoyment. Sydney Smith

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