10% of Real Estate Agents Surveyed Think Obama’s Mortgage Modification Program (HAMP) is Reducing Foreclosures

Top Realtors® address local market trends and attitudes

Tallahassee, FL (March 3, 2010) – If you want to know something about local real estate, ask a Realtor®. Homes & Land, a provider of real estate media and marketing for over 37 years, recently launched Market Pulse. In an effort to develop a clear view of each market, in February Homes & Land asked over one hundred thousand real estate agents to report their opinions about their local real estate market. The national, state, and county results are published in the Market Pulse Survey Report. Overall, optimism is improving with most agents reporting an increase in homebuyer interest. However, in states with the highest foreclosure rates, buying appears to be driven by distressed home sales.

When asked if President Obama’s Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) “has reduced the rate of foreclosures in your market,” only 10 percent of respondents said ‘yes’. Initial details about HAMP became available on March 4, 2009 with the promise of easing at-risk homeowners. The plan makes available $75 billion in funding for up to four million homeowners, providing a modified interest rate and three months of a probationary period.

“Foreclosures and short sales still appear to be driving home sales in several states,” says Eric Adair, Business Development Analyst for Homes & Land. “Unfortunately, the data on the program to date and the responses from our survey show that HAMP has done little to help. Clearly respondents to our survey don’t believe this program is helping to reduce foreclosures.”

When asked, “How would you describe consumer interest in purchasing a home in your area over the past three months,” 58 percent of agents in the U.S. said, “increasing.” Regional responses in states with the highest foreclosure rates showed interest even higher than the national average.

In the top three states with the highest foreclosure rates, real estate agents who responded are seeing increased homebuyer interest. Arizona (71%), California (64%) and Florida (67%) agents are seeing more interest, but the increase appears to be coming in the form of distressed home sales. Only 14% of agents reported that the majority (50% or more) of their sales over the last 12 months came from distressed properties. However, Arizona (38%), California (35%) and Florida (26%) agents each reported sales of distressed homes much higher than the national average.

“Almost 5800 Realtors® and agents across the U.S. participated in the Market Pulse survey,” says Adair. “We will continue ‘taking the pulse’ of as many local markets as we can throughout 2010 to better identify trends and regional market conditions.”

The Market Pulse Report, located at www.homesandland.com/marketpulse, provides insight on regional real estate trends and attitudes across the U.S. For more than 37 years, Realtors® have counted on Homes & Land to provide the most targeted distribution channels to reach active homebuyers. Log on 24-hours a day to find homes for sale, real estate listings, home valuations, and gain insight and perspective into the home sales market.

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