April 8th, 2009Carolyn Said, Chronicle Staff Writer”A vast “shadow inventory” of foreclosed homes that banks are holding off the market could wreak havoc with the already battered real estate sector, industry observers say.””We believe that there are in the neighborhood of 600,000 properties nationwidethat banks have repossessed but not put on the market, “said Rick Sharga, vice president of RealtyTrac.”
May 19th, 2009Blog posted by Peter Coy”A new survey from Zillow.com confirms what I’ve been saying for months: There is a huge amount of “shadow inventory”in the housing market. Except the shadow is even bigger than I imagined.” According to Zillow’s VP for data and analytics, Stan Humphries, “Almost one-third of homeowners (31%) said they would be at least somewhat likely to put their homes on the market in the next 12 months if they saw signs of a recovering real estate market…We here at Zillow expect to see a long, drawn-out bottom, with any upward bumps in value tempered by new inventory coming into the market.”
July 21st, 2009Real estate news and analysis from the Wall Street Journal”…there are some signs that banks may be delaying foreclosures, either because they’re overwhelmed with a glut of delinquent loans or because they’re strategically holding off on over saturating the market. That so-called “shadow inventory” could lead to an uptick in foreclosure listings later this year.”
August 2nd, 2009by CalculatedRisk, lifted from the comments on Corus: “Too toxic to fail” by Rob Dawg”On shadow inventory from Reuters: “Shadow” inventory lurks over U.S. housing recovery[A] massive supply of unsold homesis waiting in the wings and could easily swamp the recovery before it can gather speed. The number of homes listed officially on the market, while still at historically high levels, might be only the tip of the iceberg: said Stan Humphries, chief economist at real estate website Zillow.com in Seattle, Washington.”
September 30th, 2009Quoted from Henry Blodget, CEO and Editor-in-Chief of The Business Insider”Amherst Securities has produced a scary analysis of this “shadow inventory” overhang, which Amherst estimates is a shocking 7 million houses (The consensus is only 2-3 million). 7 million houses represents 1.4 times the number of houses currently sold in the country each year. So this represents a massive overhang. As these houses hit the market in future years, they will keep pressure on house prices. This will likely either lead to further declines in prices or delay the recovery.”
October 13th, 2009from Homefront by Jim Wasserman and Dale Kasler”There is no massive shadow inventoryof bank-owned repos – and banks aren’t intentionally holding them off the market. So says Foreclosure Radar’s Sean O’toole.”
October 15th, 2009Written by Eric Wolff”There is no shadow inventory; there is no bank conspiracy; there are not houses waiting like vine-ripened tomatoes for the moment to be plucked, says a recent report from ForeclosureRadar, a prominent data-tracking firm.”
I offer these quotes from various sites to show the progression of the “shadow inventory” issue. What I found fascinating is the wide variance of opinion. Experts in the field can’t agree, any more than the numbers that support their opinion. It seems to me, if they have been predicting this “glut” of homes to come on the market since (at the very least) the beginning of the year, and it hasn’t happened, it might be time to question the reality of “shadow inventory”. Interpret it as over-reaction, misinterpretation or simply wrong, the “shadow inventory” has yet to appear. Contrary to popular opinion and strange as it may be, we in Sacramento have more demand for foreclosures than we have foreclosures to sell. It is common to have many multiples of offers on each foreclosure. Foreclosure buyers have become accustom to the rejection of their offer – even when it offers over asking price. I, for one, do believe in fairy tales…and maybe this is one of them!