NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – The newest Foreclosure Trends report for Tennessee was just released Wednesday, and it shows foreclosure numbers are down, particularly in Middle Tennessee.
We’re told the decline in foreclosures in Tennessee started in 2015 and has been continuous.
Officials with the Tennessee Housing Development Agency attribute the drop to stricter lending requirements, low mortgage rates, unemployment being at a record low in Tennessee, improving wages and appreciating home values.
All of it means there are fewer triggers causing homeowners to fall behind on mortgages.
Sher Powers, the 2018 President of Nashville Greater Association of Realtors told News 2, “The foreclosure market here in Nashville is very skinny, particularly in the entry-level market. They are scooped up as soon as they show up and a lot of people are finding alternatives to going under foreclosure, including refinancing, selling as a short sale, or alternatively finding some kind of private buyer who might help them and allow them to live in the home.”
According to research from THDA, foreclosures in the Nashville area have fallen by more than 90 percent over the past seven years, but Davidson County has still experienced more foreclosures than any other county in Middle Tennessee.
“That’s almost entirely a function of its population being what it is," said THDA Research Analyst, Joe Speer.
That’s a different story when you look at the entire state of Tennessee.
Speer said, “As far as individual counties with the highest delinquency and foreclosure rates, those tend to be more rural areas, typically in West Tennessee.”
If you’re thinking about buying a foreclosed property, there are a few things you need to know.
Powers said, “Typically when a home goes into foreclosure it’s also deferred maintenance so you’re looking at a home that does need some TLC. But, there are some great first-time buyer homes out there that are being foreclosed on that could be the first right home. A lot of times they will not qualify for conventional or FHA first time buyer financing…. THDA, and occasionally they will work for a renovation, rehabilitation loan. A lot of times they’ll qualify for a 203K if they don’t need major structural work and a lot of cosmetics of updating, wiring, plumbing, things like that.”
So will the downward foreclosure trend in Tennessee continue?
Speer said, “Coming into the first quarter of 2018 we may see some seasonal changes. There’s some data that shows that foreclosures may go up in this next quarter.”
If that does happen, Speer said we shouldn’t be overly concerned.
“At this point we’re in great shape," Speer told News 2.
You can get a foreclosed property for a really good price, but some are priced in the millions.
We’re told everything at the entry level goes very quickly, so you need to have a realtor, credit report, and loan in place before you even start looking.
Click here to read thefull fourth quarter Tennessee Foreclosure Report.