Bloomberg: The Housing Market Is Waving a Red Flag

speculation

The Housing Market Is Waving a Red Flag

Third-party investors are making up an alarmingly high share of auction purchases, according to housing-data firm RealtyTrac

Almost nine years after the housing-market bust helped trigger the most recent recession, RealtyTrac senior vice president Daren Blomquist sees the industry waving a red flag.

The same fervent speculation that abetted the housing bubble is showing up in the bloated share of foreclosures snapped up by third-party investors at auction — a record 31 percent in June, according to RealtyTrac data that starts in 2000.

Many of those third-party buyers are “mom and pop” investors with less experience, said Blomquist. At the same time, institutional investors, a subset of the third-party investors who purchase at least 10 properties a year, are ducking out of the market.

“It’s somewhat counterintuitive — as the market gets better and there are fewer foreclosures available, demand for those good deals, those bargains in the market goes up,” said Blomquist. “When you see this high percentage of the properties going to third-party investors, that is a sign that these speculators may be over-inflating the market.”

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