Foreclosures in Orlando on the Rise… Again

Residential foreclosures in Orlando increased by sixty percent in the first quarter of 2019 when compared to the year before. What’s crazy is that foreclosures are decreasing in most of the US.

In the first quarter of 2019 banks foreclosed on a whopping 2,049 homes throughout Orange, Osceola, Seminole, and Lake counties. That’s a staggering increase when you compare it to the number of foreclosures in the first quarter of 2018 which was only 1,280.

Foreclosures were on a steep decline since the market crash of 2009 when plunging home prices made it very hard for homeowners to cover their mortgage payments. In the worst part of the housing crisis, over twenty thousand homes went into foreclosure every quarter. However, since 2015 -2016 Orlando foreclosures were seen less and less.

I believe that it was a perfect storm of skyrocketing home prices combined with Orlando’s lower-than-average wages that hurt the Orlando real estate market. Even more so than other major US cities.

Nationwide, foreclosures dropped by 15% year after year and are currently at their lowest level since 2008. In Orlando, home prices have experienced an increase of over 7% per year since 2014 according to the data from the Orlando Realtor Association.

The rising home prices make it easier for people to avoid foreclosure since Orlando homeowners can sell for enough to satisfy their mortgages.

As an Orlando real estate broker, I always try to stay in tune with what’s happening in my area. Although foreclosures in Orlando are on a steady rise, I don’t think we’re anywhere near the next crash.

There are still many homeowners who bought a decade ago and are currently upside down with their mortgage. However, with rising rent prices they’re better off to continue paying the mortgage… even if they owe more than the home is worth.

Interest rates remain low as well, as the average rate in March was just 4.2 % according to the Orlando Realtor Association.

The mortgage industry today is much different than it was in the early 2000s. Lender guidelines are much tougher and the popular “jumbo loans” are much harder to get approved for as well.

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Orlando Foreclosure Activity #1 in the Nation – Real Estate Business Stays Unaffected

A new industry report places Orlando first in its list of cities and metropolitan areas with maximum foreclosure activity for the month of March. The number of foreclosure filings in the Orlando real estate marketplace increased by 13 percent in comparison to the figures from one month earlier (February 2014).

According to some Orlando realtors, the March foreclosure figures also bear another distinction. With a total of 2,886 foreclosure listings in the community, the March figures represent a nine-month high.
But Orlando real estate agents are not worried. The figures are still lower than they were at the same time, a year ago. Further, as noted by a majority of the top Orlando realtors, the business hasn’t slowed down for the residential real estate community of Orlando at least.

Foreclosure trends around Orlando

Orlando’s number one position in the foreclosure activity charts contributed to Florida’s status as the state with the highest density of foreclosures. While the national average lay at one foreclosure for every 1,126 homes, Florida saw one foreclosure in every 407 houses on an average.

Metropolitan Orlando led other cities and metropolitan areas in the state with one foreclosure action in every 326 homes. The numbers present a grim situation no doubt, but not when compared with statistics of previous quarters and years. Orlando’s March 2014 foreclosure rate is lower than the rates of March 2013. This also marks the third consecutive quarter when Florida’s foreclosure rates have decreased.

Cities and counties around Orlando have seen their own ups and downs in foreclosure activities. The biggest hike in foreclosure activities was experienced by Polk County. With 786 foreclosure filings in March 2014, the rates went 15 percent above those in February 2014 and 28 percent above those in 2013.

Realtors Not Worried About Increasing Foreclosure Activity

Several years ago, real estate agents in Orlando were soliciting business from property owners who were just beginning with the foreclosure process. However, the trend has changed of late and realtors no longer depend on “foreclosing owners” for business. Realtors have enough business in their hands, further proof that increasing foreclosure activity will not slow the market.

Residential real estate buyers have witnessed an increase in their home buying confidence. The inventory shortage has been softening since February 2013. Banks have become lenient with their mortgage lending and Americans have seen a reduction in their unemployment rates. Add to it the several new construction projects underway in Orlando and you have all the reasons why home buyers are undeterred in their purchasing.

The spring buying season has just begun. And if you’ve been waiting for an opportune moment to purchase property, now is the right time.

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Orlando Real Estate Industry Basks Under the Glory of Reduced Foreclosure Rates

CoreLogic has some great news for Orlando realtors and the Orlando real estate industry in general. The American business intelligence agency that provides financial and real estate information and analytics to businesses and the feds, reports that the foreclosure rates of real estate properties in Metro Orlando reduced again in December 2013.

This brings in a ray of hope for real estate agents in Orlando who have been worried for quite some time due to the high rates at which properties in the city get foreclosed. Even with a  decrease in the foreclosure rates in December, Orlando still sports foreclosure rates higher than the national average.

Foreclosure rate 3.65 percent down from same time a year ago


CoreLogic reports that 6.69 percent residential properties in the Sanford-Kissimmee-Orlando area were  slapped with foreclosure in December 2013 – 3.65 percent down from the foreclosure rate in December 2012 (10.34 percent).

CoreLogic, which trades on the New York Stock Exchange as CLGX also reported that the national average of residential-property foreclosures for December 2013 was 2.09 percent. Further, the report also revealed that homeowners of the Metro Orlando area had become more regular with their mortgage payments.

The delinquency rate dropped by 4.53 percent in December 2013. CoreLogic reported an 11.04 percent of mortgage payments coming in later than 90 days in December 2013. A year ago mortgage defaulters in the Metro Orlando area peaked at 15.57 percent.

As is the case with foreclosure rates, the Metro Orlando mortgage delinquency rates top the national average of 5.03 percent this year. Back in 2012, the rate stood at 6.40 percent for the same month.

Orlando realtors anticipate improved sentiments in near future


The health of a state’s real estate market greatly influences the health of the overall economy of the state. Listing agents in Orlando reveal that reduced foreclosure rates in Metro Orlando is promising news for the Orlando real estate market because it not only signifies that the housing market is improving, it also helps boost the values of other residential properties.

Add to it the fact that lowered foreclosure, as well as mortgage delinquency rates, are elementary proof that the market is less distressed and the financial status of homeowners is improving.  You’ll know why real estate agents in Orlando are tying this news to the hopes of a stronger market and more buyer confidence in the near future.

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Is Orlando Real Estate Still a Good Investment?

Of late, there have been several bits of speculation and buzz that indicate that the Orlando real estate market is booming, with reports indicating decreased foreclosures, rising real estate prices, and a rising number of real estate sales. What we must ask ourselves is how stable is this current trend, and are we in promising times or living in a bubble that could end up in an economic collapse in times to come.

What’s changed over the last few decades?

In today’s economic and financial scenario, bank finance isn’t as readily available for Orlando real estate as it was decades before. As individual investors, individuals are hard-pressed to secure bank financing for real estate investments. What then happens, is that the small investors in a hurry to make a sizeable profit invest their own funds, often investing entire life savings to purchase real estate in order to reap the benefits in due time.

However, this doesn’t turn out well in most cases, as these investors find themselves struggling with statutory regulations such as tax assessments and payments, insurance premiums, and other fees involved in purchasing real estate. As a result, they get trapped in a state of limbo, finding themselves without their life savings, and with a compulsion to sell at a loss to recover this money.

Additionally, investor groups are backing end-users into a corner by securing real estate using cash, as the end-users cannot afford to pay all associated fees and taxes since they cannot secure bank financing. Hence, investors will end up driving out these end-users or renting out properties. In the case of rent, there is no appreciation in the value of the property, as property values will improve only if there are people willing to purchase them and start living in them. With the constantly rising prices, these practices place a lot of financial strain on the already struggling end-users.

Why reports don’t tell you things the way you need to see them

Despite the recent reports about reduced foreclosures and rising prices, why is it still a bad idea to invest in Orlando real estate This is because the reports don’t account for foreclosures that are dismissed due to lack of prosecution, which will not be accounted for until they are filed for again. Another possibility is that banks and similar financial institutions have a role in delaying foreclosures, simply to avoid the added burden of tax assessments and insurance.

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Orlando Realty’s Weekly MLS Market Report

Orlando Realty’s Weekly Report for Home Buyers and Sellers

Below are the numbers for properties sold and newly listed properties in Orange County for the past 7 days as well as the numbers from the week prior. By looking at this report it’s evident that the Orlando Real Estate market is steadily stabilizing. Orlando short sales are overtaking foreclosure sales and the demand for Orlando Realty is more than keeping up with the inventory coming on to the market.

 Our research is done by our Top Orlando Realtors using Florida’s Multiple Listing Service.

Orange County from 5/4/2012  through 5/11/2012.

*  Number of Short Sale Properties Listed –                       106             [ 5/27 thru 5/4  –  83]

*  Number of Short Sale Properties under contract-       207              [ 5/27 thru 5/4  –  187 ]

*  Number of REO Properties [Bank Owned] Listed –     113              [ 5/27 thru 5/4  –  384]

*  Number of REO Properties under contract-                  112              [ 5/27 thru 5/4  –  126]

*  Number of Regular listings (By Owner)-                         213            [ 5/27 thru 5/4  –  205]

*  Number of Regular listings under contract-                 243              [ 5/27 thru 5/4  –  203]

*  Total Homes Sold in Orange County-                             244             [ 5/27 thru 5/4  –  397]

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