The combination of fewer bank-owned homes for sale and stronger demand during the traditional spring home-buying season also pushed sale prices higher.
Bank-owned homes and those in some stage of foreclosure posted the biggest annual increase in average sales price since 2006, before the housing bubble burst, the firm said.
“It boils down to supply and demand — limited supply and pretty strong demand — especially during the second quarter, when a lot of buyers come out of the woodwork and look to buy,” said Daren Blomquist, a vice president at RealtyTrac.
As of last month, there were 1.47 million U.S. homes in some stage of the foreclosure process or owned by banks. Of the 620,751 in lenders’ possession, only about 15 percent are listed for sale, according to RealtyTrac.
The measured approach has triggered bidding wars and led to higher prices in markets like Las Vegas, where the inventory of bank-owned homes sank to a 6.2-month supply in June.
The pool of foreclosed properties for sale also has declined because many pending foreclosure cases were put on hold last year while banks sorted through foreclosure abuse claims. A $25 billion settlement in February cleared the way for lenders to tackle that backlog of foreclosures, and the number of homes entering the foreclosure process has been rising.
The Standard & Poor’s/Case Shiller index for June showed the first year-over-year increase in home prices since September 2010.
Sales of new homes in the second quarter were up 18 percent from a year earlier. As of last month, they’re up 25 percent from a year earlier. Sales of previously occupied homes rose nearly 9 percent in the April-to-June quarter. They jumped 10 percent in July compared with the same month last year.
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