More Homes Standing Vacant As Home Values Stabilize

Many home owners have been holding onto devalued properties in desperate hope that the value of their homes would recover enough so that they could recover some of their investment when they put their property up for sale. It is looking now like the sliding home values have hit that bottom that home owners have been waiting for. Unfortunately, at present we are also experiencing a huge volume of vacant properties across the nation, potentially making for a less than ideal situation in which to put your home up for sale.

According to the census bureau homeownership fell to 67.2% at the end of 2009 which puts current levels of ownership at the lowest rate in ten years. Understandably, home ownership is lowest in areas where the cost of owning a home is highest and the biggest drops have occurred in the states that have been hardest hit with foreclosures. Vacancy rates have risen as home ownership has fallen; there were approximately 100,000 more homes sitting vacant at the end of 2009 than there were only mere months earlier.

Although the collection of foreclosures is still accumulating and unemployment rates continue to sit at high levels, there seems at last to be some hope on the horizon for those holding out for an end to the declining of home prices though. Experts report that home value decreases have been slowing over the previous year, even as so many of the factors that hinder the market’s recovery have continued to be a problem for the real estate market.

It may be some time yet before home values actually rise again, however. It is expected that the large number of vacant properties will keep pressure on keeping housing prices down because it helps create a buyer’s market. With unemployment still at high levels across much of the country as well, there are fewer people who can afford to buy into this suppressed market at this time to take advantage of the excess housing supplies and low prices even with the reasonable interest rates and tax credits that are still available.

The next few months will be a telling time for many potential buyers and sellers as the markets continue to rebalance themselves and home values find a new level of equilibrium. Hopefully the market can find a balance that home owners across the nation can live with.