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Trade-up_buyersWith foreclosure sales in rapid decline nationwide and in high demand in many fast-rising markets, a report released this week by mortgage technology company FNC indicates that housing demand by trade-up buyers is rising as the home equity available to these prospective buyers is improving.

According to FNC’s Foreclosure Market Report, the foreclosure market has rapidly improved in recent months with foreclosure rates approaching pre-crisis levels—an indication of strengthening supply-side conditions. On the demand side, steadily rising home prices and an expectation of continued recovery have stimulated housing turnover by prospective buyers who are in a position to take advantage of low home prices. In the meantime, higher home prices are bringing out trade-up demand from existing homeowners who are experiencing rising home equity, which supports a down payment on their next bigger house.

“We’ve seen hard data from the past 18 months that shows rising home prices and a foreclosure market with diminished impact due to decreasing foreclosure inventories and fewer new foreclosure filings,” said FNC Director of Research Yanling Mayer. “Meanwhile, a very encouraging trend that has been developing is the rising participation of trade-up buyers who are seeing improving home equity position and positive capital appreciation on existing homes.

“An important sign of a healthy and sustainable recovery is increased housing turnover driven by trade-up buying, which is more or less discretionary spending,” Mayer said. “These buyers are typically more responsive to market conditions and financial incentives.”

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