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Home Prices Surged Despite Rise in Phoenix Pre Foreclosures

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By : John Cutts    99 or more times read
Despite the surge in Phoenix pre foreclosures in March, home prices increased in the area during the month.

The median price in the Phoenix area increased to $144,500 in March, a jump of 13.3 percent from the $127,500 median sales price in March last year, based on figures from the National Association of Realtors.

Home price data from real estate business analysts at Arizona State University also showed substantial increases. The median sales price for previously-owned single-family homes in March increased to $142,500, up by 1.8 percent from the February median of $140,000 and up by 12.2 percent from the March 2009 median of $127,000.

ASU analysts said that home prices in the Phoenix area increased despite the still high percentage of foreclosed home list sales largely because March is traditionally the peak of the home resale season. The months from March to August are usually the time people buy homes or move up as they get ready for schools, holidays and vacations. The other reasons were the surge in short sales, bargain hunters and increased foreclosure filings.

Sales of Phoenix pre foreclosures and foreclosed properties still accounted for a huge portion of total home resales in March, with distressed properties comprising 64 percent of sales. A total of 4,400 foreclosure filings were recorded in March, a jump of 48.2 percent from the 2,700 posted in March last year.

It was the condo and townhouse subsectors that did not improve during the start of the home selling season. The median sales price for condo units and townhouses fell substantially by 22.3 percent from $115,000 in March last year to $94,000 in March this year. A total of 650 condo units and townhomes were also foreclosed in March, a sharp jump of 120 percent from the 295 units repossessed in March last year.

The number of properties repossessed by mortgage banks through public foreclosure auctions in Arizona in March also increased to 6,869 units, a jump of 13.5 percent from the 6,053 units bought back in February.

The percentage of REOs in March held steady as bank owned properties in March accounted for 36.4 percent of the 18,856 foreclosure filings during the month, nearly the same as the 36.2-percent share of REOs in February.

Based on a study by the Mortgage Asset Research Institute, the pace of Phoenix pre foreclosures could surge as the rate of mortgage fraud continues to rise in the metro area.

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