Read about CRP's current activities and research in central Ohio and beyond. Click on one of the recent news items below, search by keyword, or choose a number or letter in the grey box.
To view the listing by date of articles mentioning CRP or related to CRP work, click here.
Foreclosures Grow in Fertile Suburbs
Big percentage of sales are sheriff's
Thursday, August 13, 2009
by Mark Ferenchik
A growing percentage of foreclosed houses sold at sheriff's auctions have been in suburban Franklin County school districts.
And in three districts, the percentage of sheriff's sales as a share of overall sales is higher than in the Columbus school district.
The Whitehall, Hamilton and Groveport Madison school districts all had a higher percentage of sheriff's sales in 2008 than the Columbus school district's 43.1 percent, according to a recent study by the nonprofit Community Research Partners.
About one-third of all home sales in the South-Western, Reynoldsburg and Canal Winchester school districts in 2008 were sheriff's sales, the study found.
The findings show that foreclosures expanded as the economy went into recession in December 2007, going beyond subprime and predatory loans, said Jung Kim, director of data services for Columbus-based Community Research Partners.
The number of sheriff's sales in Franklin County almost doubled between 2003 and 2007, from 2,525 to 4,771, according to information from the Franklin County sheriff's and auditor's offices that the group used to make its findings.
The number decreased to 4,234 last year.
But as sheriff's sales have leveled off countywide, the study found that through last year, the percentage of sheriff's sales in relation to overall sales was historically high -- 32 percent of all sales of one- to three-unit properties excluding condominiums.
One reason for such a high share is that overall sales slumped so much in 2008. Still, that's up from only 12 percent of all sales in 2003.
Although the overall number of sheriff's sales dipped between 2007 and 2008, they continued to increase in school districts outside Columbus, from 1,668 to 1,722.
One thing that stood out is the correlation between housing prices and the percentage of houses sold at sheriff's sale. Generally, a higher percentage of houses were sold at sheriff's sale in school districts with lower median home prices, Kim said.
The findings aren't surprising, said Ken Gold, director of the Center for Real Estate Education and Research at Ohio State University's Fisher College of Business.
But so many factors play into the numbers -- from job losses and demographic changes to the age of homes and the types of mortgages -- that it's difficult to zero in on specific reasons, Gold said.
The report said it's difficult to quantify the impact of sheriff's-sale properties on values overall. Researchers found that in 94 percent of the cases in 2008, the mortgage-holding banks bought the property at sheriff's sales.
But values are affected when the bank turns around and sells a house for less than similar houses in the area would go for, said Ben Corcoran, senior residential appraiser for the Appraisal Group of Columbus.
He also said he's not surprised with the findings because residents in districts with lower home values and incomes might be less able to weather economic storms and have larger portions of their incomes dedicated to house payments.
Kim said his group used school districts to evaluate sheriff's sales because neighborhoods within those districts generally share similar characteristics.
The number of sheriff's sales in Franklin County almost doubled between 2003 and 2007, from 2,525 to 4,771, the group found. The number decreased to 4,234 last year.
Read the report here.