By now most of us have passed a house in a subdivision that has over grown grass, un-pruned shrubs, and a house that has an unkempt look. Well in parts of Osceola County this scenario is repeating itself over and over as loan defaults are among the highest in Central Florida. 5 of the top 10 zip codes for foreclosures are in Osceola County.
During the housing boom, Osceola county had plenty of land to build on and low home prices. Most of the “speculators” were drawn to Osceola County in hopes of making a quick buck flipping homes. When the market changed, most speculators found themselves stuck with homes that were overpriced in a market that was sinking fast. To make matters worse, most financed their purchases using high risk financing that is now adjusting to higher rates.
Most of these homes will fall into foreclosure and some will be able to rent to help pay there expenses but it is the neighborhoods that are suffering. Most of these owners took pride in their neighborhoods by maintaining their properties. There was a sense of pride in owners to look out for one another and help your neighbor. Now we see communities where many homes are vacant, the lawns are in terrible shape and homes with multiple renters who have no connection to the community. This only compounds the problem for owners trying to sell. Prospective buyers stay away for fear that these communities will continue to devalue which put more pressure on prices to drop forcing more owners into foreclosure and the cycle continues.
Lets hope we reach the bottom soon so these communities can rebound and the new owners take pride and invest in those communities.