Foreclosure Prevention Telephone Seminar

KARE-11 News provide two chances for worried homeowners to seek help this week.

This week, homeowners will have two opportunities to have their questions answered from the comfort and convenience of their home. On Tuesday, the Minnesota Home Ownership Center is offering the first of its 2009 series of telephone seminars. The following evening, KARE-11 will feature a phone bank of housing counselors during its 10pm newscast.

Telephone seminar offers homeowners chance to ask questions, find out what to do if worried about mortgage
Telephone seminars provide convenient, private access point to information for homeowners who are worried about their mortgage and are just beginning to ask questions about their situation as well as those facing foreclosure. The telephone seminar allows people to participate anonymously from the privacy of their home, work or car. The seminar format is similar to a radio call-in show, including informational segments and questions from callers.

The telephone seminar will take place on:
Tuesday, February 10 from 7:00 to 8:00 pm.
Call in number: (888) 886-6603

Those interested in participating can call in anytime between 7:00 and 8:00 pm.

Housing counselors available during KARE-11 news
On Wednesday, February 11, housing counselors will be taking calls during the 10 pm newscast of KARE-11. Phone lines will be open during the entire broadcast. The phone number will be announced throughout the newscast, which will also feature a segment about a homeowner who successfully averted foreclosure by working with one of the Minnesota Home Ownership Center’s counseling agencies.

For more information about the telephone seminar or KARE-11 segment, call (651) 659-9336 or visit

Foreclosures and Short Sales are Comparables

A debate recently in my office between another agent and I focused on whether foreclosures and short sale properties really should be used for comparables for “normal” sales.

My esteemed colleague believes that since foreclosures and short sales are sold under “distressed” situations, they are not good comparables for other homes for sale.  My counter is that many foreclosures and short sale properties are not in bad condition and so they should sell at a fair market price regardless of their “distressed” situation.

When it comes down to it, foreclosure and short sale listings most often do sell at a discount to regular listings and should have that taken into consideration, but even in a slow market houses priced appropriately are selling quickly, so those are market prices.

What we do find is a substantial disparity on how much of an impact those foreclosures have on the houses around them.  In areas with low numbers of foreclosure and short sale properties, we find that those properties have little effect on the market as a whole.  Where there are a high number of these properties in a single area, we find the the impact is more like an exponential impact: the higher the number, the more substantial the impact each additional listing has.