Foreclosures up almost 25% in Richmond

By Ben Garbarek - bio | email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - A recent report shows home foreclosures in the Richmond area spiked nearly 25 percent during the last quarter compared to last year, but will it get any better?

The newest numbers aren't pretty, but local realtors say there is reason for optimism. Several major banks are slowing down the number of houses they foreclose which could bring that number down.

Still, Richmond is faring better than most other places in Virginia.

Local realtors say if there are any positives to take away from the current housing crisis, it's that you may be able to move into a nicer neighborhood than your used to.

"I ended up buying a home in the school district I wanted to be in, in a neighborhood I never thought I could afford," said John Pace of Keller Williams Realty. "We had to sell our home at a discount, but we were able to buy the home we wanted to."

Despite the spike in foreclosures here in Richmond, local realtors say Richmond fares pretty well when you compare it to other communities in Virginia and the rest of the country.

Fairfax County in northern Virginia has by far the highest number of foreclosures in the Commonwealth, but Chesterfield County is near the top with almost double the number of foreclosures as Richmond.

Realtors say despite the numbers, it's a good time to buy a house.

"It's a fantastic time to buy, he said. "Even if you're looking at foreclosed homes, it's a good time to buy. Inventory is great, prices are low and rates are low."

Overall Virginia is still about 20 percent lower than the national average.

One of the places with the lowest number of foreclosures is Henrico County at half the national average.

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