Foreclosure sales dip in NYC, unlike nation

By Sarabeth Sanders | September 30, 2010 12:00AM

Report reveals biggest discounts are in Brooklyn and Staten Island

Distressed property investors, take note: New York City homes in foreclosure are selling at as much as 43 percent off the average sale price, according to a new second-quarter foreclosure sales report by RealtyTrac, released today. But with inventory levels low, foreclosure sales activity in the city is nonetheless defying the upward nationwide trend, with a 10 percent drop from the first quarter of 2010.

During the second quarter, New York City saw 893 residential foreclosure sales, which includes both bank-owned
home sales and pre-foreclosure home sales, or short sales, compared with 993 such sales the quarter before, the report says. The figure accounts for 8.74 percent of all home sales citywide and also represents a 27 percent drop from foreclosure sales activity during the same period in 2009, when there were 1,222 distressed residences sold.

Nationwide, foreclosure sales increased by almost 5 percent quarter-over-quarter and accounted for 24 percent of all residential sales, though sales were down 20 percent year-over-year.

Despite efforts by the federal government this year to encourage short sales rather than foreclosures, both bank-owned and pre-foreclosure sales activity in New York City saw significant declines, down 34 percent and 24 percent year-over-year, respectively.

“Part of it is that… we’ve been seeing foreclosure activity go down in New York City, and that coincides with the fact that there are fewer foreclosure properties out there to sell,” said Daren Blomquist, a spokesperson for RealtyTrac. “There’s kind of a small pool of these foreclosure properties in New York City, but people are getting pretty good discounts on them — especially with the REOs.”

While the average foreclosed New York City home went for $397,992 in the second quarter, bank-owned homes, taken on their own, went for an average of just $282,207. Pre-foreclosure sales, on the other hand, closed for $439,630, on average.

The biggest discounts in the city were found among REO properties in Brooklyn and Staten Island, which each saw homes go for an average of nearly 43 percent less than non-foreclosure homes in those boroughs.