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Foreclosure Backlog Boosts Sheriff's Sales

yorkdispatch.com | November 20, 2013

By Candy Woodall

York County sheriff's sales are at their highest level in three years.

The sheriff's office is listing 269 new properties for sale on Monday, Dec. 9, bringing the count to 1,616 new properties listed this year.

This year's total bests the 1,360 new listings in 2012 and the 1,252 new listings in 2011, according to statistics from the York County sheriff's office.

Those numbers are the second part of a cause-and-effect relationship between local foreclosures and sheriff's sales.

Foreclosures are also on track to be at their highest level in three years.

As of Friday, 1,640 foreclosures had been filed with the York County prothonotary's office.

From January through October, the number of foreclosures each month has ranged from 118 to 182.

It is likely more than 100 will be filed in November and December, which will push the yearly total past the 1,740 foreclosures filed in 2012, said Prothonotary Pam Lee.

"It's higher than I would have liked to see for 2013," she said. "I would expect lower numbers this far out from the big number of foreclosures a few years ago."

As many residents lost their homes in the wake of the recession, more than 2,000 foreclosures were filed in 2009 and 2010.

Matter of backlog: In that same period of time, credit card lawsuits were also at a high. But the number of credit card suits dropped from a record 255 in September 2010 to 20 last month.

"Because we did see lower credit card suits, I expected to see lower foreclosures," Lee said.

But the leader of the local Realtors association said it's going to take some time to see an improvement.

"Many foreclosures were put on hold a few years ago, and there was a large backlog to work through. Some of the foreclosures out there are several years old," said John LeCates, president of the Realtors Association of York & Adams Counties.

Impact on home sales: The higher foreclosures and sheriff's sales have been a boon to buyers and a blight for sellers, he said.

"It's part of why our sales have been strong," LeCates said.

Throughout the first 10 months of the year, York County home sales increased 14 percent compared to the previous year.

Many of those sales were to investors buying foreclosed properties to refurbish and resell.

"They're very well priced and attractive to the investment community," LeCates said.

But those lower prices have decreased home values for other sellers.

The median sale price in York County during the first 10 months of the year was $145,000, representing a 2 percent increase from the $142,000 recorded during the same period in 2012.

"It's part of why our prices have been stagnant. There's no doubt foreclosures definitely affect home prices," he said.

 

Back to November 2013 Archive

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