Foreclosures for Lee County Dip Slightly in July

Lee County in Southwest Florida has experienced another promising month for July.  The number of foreclosures has dipped slightly last month and the numbers of permits issued for new home construction is increasing.  Real estate analysts hope that these numbers may be strong enough to help the home construction industry to recover.

For the month of July, there were 584 foreclosure lawsuits filed.  This figure was down from the month of June where 654 foreclosures where filed. In last year’s data the number of foreclosures filed for the month of July, however, were less totaling 438 cases.  This data was released last week by the Southwest Florida Real Estate Investors Association.

All of these numbers are comparatively low compared to number of Southwest Florida foreclosures that were filed back in 2008. There were 2,665 foreclosures filed back in November of 2008 where homeowners when homeowners had loss of income and could not sustain their mortgage payment. From May 2008 to April 2009, there was only one month that posted less than 2000 cases for foreclosures. Many of the homes that fell into foreclosure were vacation homes and not the primary homes of the owner, and considering Southwest Florida is a tourist attraction where many people own rental properties and multiple properties, it wasn’t surprising that the foreclosure rate was so high there.

The director for the association, Mr. Jeff Tumbarello, noted that the number of new construction homes are on the rise as more and more buyers are interested in purchasing these over distressed properties. He also added that for an additional $10,000 to $20,000, owners would have a brand new home as opposed to a beat up foreclosed property.

Another realtor in the area, Ms. Paige Rausch has observed that the real estate market is slowly recovering with a record of $476.5 million worth of deeds that were listed for last month. For the same month last year, there was a recorded $321.2 million worth of deeds that were filed.

The agent has also added that there is a movement of funds as potential buyers is responding to the properties that are on sale in Lee County.

There has been a noticeable change with the number of family home permits in the different areas in Lee County.  In Cape Coral, there were 36 permits issued last month which was down from June where 40 permits were issued.  This can be considered still high from last year’s data where 18 permits were issued for the month of July. Bonita Springs has reported 16 permits issued for July which was also down from 23 permits issued from the previous month.

Mr. Tumbarello has also noted that this recovery would benefit both builders and traditional sellers as sales for distressed properties are winding down.
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