October 24, 2013
Central Ohio’s housing market is recovering from the real-estate crash, but it’s still a long way from healthy.
Two new reports illustrate that distressed properties continue to play a large role in the Columbus market.
Foreclosures, short sales and bank sales accounted for nearly 21 percent of central Ohio home sales during the third quarter, well above the 5 percent found in a normal housing market, according to a study by the Columbus Realtors trade group.
The local number is down from 25.3 percent a year ago and is less than half the 44.9 percent found in the first quarter of 2011, when Columbus Realtors started tracking the statistic.
But another report, by the real-estate listing and information company RealtyTrac, suggests that the figure is actually much higher.
According to RealtyTrac’s report, 49 percent of Columbus-area home sales in September were either short sales or bank sales.
Unlike Columbus Realtors, RealtyTrac includes properties sold outside the Multiple Listing Service, which is how some banks dispose of their foreclosed inventory.
By all measures, the percentage of troubled properties in the market has shrunk since the depths of the housing bust, which has helped raise sales prices of central Ohio homes. The median sales price of a Columbus-area home is up 5.1 percent from a year ago.
“The region has now seen seven consecutive quarters of year-over-year median price gains,” said Columbus Realtors President Chris Pedon. “Overall, there is a growing sense of normalcy.”