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Short Sales Post Significant Increases in Q4 2011

by Chicago Agent

Short sales were up by 12 percent in 2011, a trend many agents are hoping continues into 2012.

Hope Now recently released its State Loss Mitigation Data for December 2011, a wide-ranging report that studies the various components of the U.S. first-lien residential mortgage workout, such as delinquencies, foreclosure starts, completed foreclosure sales, loan modifications, and other loan workout plans.

Though the study, which is industry-wide and formulates its estimates based on the sales activity of its members, does not track short sales, Bill McBride of Calculated Risk was able to use some statistical magic to deduce where the sales strategy is trending, and his results were very good news for short sale agents.

Working with Hope Now’s “other loan workout” data, McBride estimated that there were 397,280 short sales in 2011, a 12 percent increase from 2010. Short sales finished 2011 in very strong territory, as well. The 40,533 short sales in December were the all-time monthly high, and the fourth quarters 110,123 in sales were the highest quarter on record. A recent featured blog on Chicago Agent predicted a busy year for REO and short sale agents in 2012, and the trends in 2011 would seem to support that conclusion.

While short sales skyrocketed, though, completed foreclosure sales continued to fall, yet another foreclosure-related stat impacted by the robo-signing fallout. According to Hope Now, there were 842,777 foreclosure sales in 2011, a 21.2 percent decline from 2010. Of those sales, 628,014 were owner-occupied, down 20 percent from 2010, and 208,933 were non-owner-occupied, a decrease of 26.4 percent from the year prior.

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