Top 10 Foreclosure Markets for First-Time Homebuyers

Some real estate markets are better than others for first-time homebuyers looking for a foreclosure bargain. But where are the best opportunities to buy discounted foreclosures?  Which metropolitan areas offer homebuyers the biggest discounts?

For a special Inman News report on Prime Real Estate Markets for First-Time Buyers, RealtyTrac compiled the top 10 metropolitan areas where first-time homebuyers can buy a foreclosure.

To compile the Top 10 list, RealtyTrac  started with the nation’s 100 largest metropolitan statistical areas based on  metros with a population greater than 100,000. From there, we narrowed the list further by selecting markets with less than a 12-month supply of REO (real estate-owned) inventory. Then, the list was pared down further by selecting metros where at least 100 foreclosure-related sales in January (demonstrating foreclosure bargains are available). RealtyTrac also wanted to  include markets where pre-foreclosure short sales were increasing at least 25 percent from January 2011 to January 2012 (lenders more willing to approve short sales). Finally, only properties where the average foreclosure-related sales price was $150,000 or less were included on the list.

The following are the10 prime foreclosure markets for first-timer buyers:

1.     Tucson, Ariz.
  2.     Reno, NV
  3.     St. Louis, MO
  4.     Columbia, S.C.
  5.     Fresno, Calif.
  6.     Gainesville, GA
  7.     Redding, Calif.
  8.     Visalia, CA
  9.     Las Vegas, NV
  10. Myrtle Beach, S.C.

At $124,100, the Fresno metro area had the highest average sales price of any market on the list. St. Louis posted the lowest price at $85,230.

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