Short Sales and the Phoenix Real Estate Inventory

avatarthumbnail.jpgI was catching up on my reading and I came across the comment on my friend John Wake’s Arizona Real Estate Notebook on a post about the state of the Phoenix real estate market.

I was surprised to read 12,000 properties are currently listed as “short-sales” which means a lot more homes will be coming on the market soon enough.

Looking just at single family detached homes in Maricopa County, there are 5,686 homes listed as short sales. Lose the kind of property and it’s about 6,800. These homes already are on the market.

If you want to make the argument that they represent some sort of phantom inventory since they’re not available in the traditional sense – a full price cash offer may not end up being accepted by the bank which, to my mind, means the property’s not fully available – that’s fine. But the logic falls apart when you try and use the current number of short sales available to indicate future inventory levels.

Keep them in the active inventory, watch them expire as the banks foreclose and you have the same total at the other end. It’s a zero sum game.

The bigger question – how many homes are the banks sitting on right now, and do the banks have the collective intelligence not to send them all on to the market at the same time. (Even if they do, it’s not going to be the end of civilization as we know it here in the Phoenix real estate market.)

[tags]Phoenix real estate[/tags]

Jonathan Dalton

Jonathan Dalton is a 40-plus-year resident of the Valley and has been helping folks buy and sell homes since 2004. He can be reached at 602-502-9693 or info at