A “bloated supply of foreclosures and weak demand from homebuyers” are depressing the market, James J. Saccacio, RealtyTrac’s chief executive officer, said in the statement. Residential real-estate prices dropped 4.1 percent in the fourth quarter from a year a earlier, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller index of home values in 20 cities.
“While accelerating foreclosure sales will help clear the oversupply of distressed properties and return balance to the market in the long run, in the short term a high percentage of foreclosure sales will continue to weigh down home prices,” Saccacio said.
Foreclosure filings may rise 20 percent to a peak this year as unemployment remains high and banks resume seizing property after a slowdown to investigate documentation procedures, the company said Jan. 13.
Distressed properties sold at a discount of 27 percent in 2009 and 22 percent the previous year, according to RealtyTrac. The discount reflects the sales price of homes in the foreclosure process compared with those not in distress, the company said.
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