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Flips account for 5.5 percent of home sales in 2015.

The share of all single-family home and condo sales in 2015 that were flips was 5.5 percent. That was up from a 5.3 percent share in 2014, according to RealtyTrac, Irvine, California. That was the first yearly increase in the share of flips in a five-year stretch, where the preceding four years all saw declines. The peak share of flips per overall sales came in 2005 when it was 8.2 percent.

The company found that the share of homes flipped grew last year from the previous year in 83 of 110 metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) studied for the report.

The company also reported that the number of active home flippers in 2015 was the highest since 2007.

RealtyTrac reported in its Year-End and Q4 2015 U.S. Home Flipping Report that the average gross profit for a flipped home last year was $55,000, which was a 10-year high.

The definition of a flipped property is a home that is sold in an arm's-length transaction for the second time in a 12-month period based on publicly recorded sales data. The data used for the study covers more than 950 counties representing more than 80 percent of the country's population.

Commenting on the study, Daren Blomquist, RealtyTrac senior vice president, said, "Not only is the share of home flips on the rise again, but we also see the flipping trend trickling down to smaller investors who are completing fewer flips per year. The total number of investors who completed at least one flip in 2015 was at the highest level since 2007, and the number of flips per investor was at the lowest level since 2008."

RealtyTrac found that there were 110,008 investors or entities that did at least one home flip in 2015. In 2007, there were 130,603 home flippers, according to RealtyTrac. The peak period for active home flippers came in 2005 when the total was 259,192.

Blomquist said that home flippers active in the market during 2015 continued to operate within relatively conservative margins. He said, "Homes flipped in 2015 were on average purchased at a 26 percent discount below estimated market value and resold by the flipper at a 5 percent premium above estimated market value."

The report found that the Miami metro area had the most homes flipped of any market around the country last year. The market had 10,658 homes flipped, or 8.6 percent of all Miami area home sales in 2015.

RealtyTrac reported that Pittsburgh led the markets with the highest average gross return on investment (ROI) with 129.5 percent in 2015. That was followed by New Orleans (99.2 percent), Philadelphia (98.4 percent), Cincinnati (89.7 percent) and New Haven, Connecticut (89.6 percent).

Markets with the highest average gross flipping profit in dollars for the 110 metros with at least 250 flips were led by San Francisco ($145,000); San Jose, California ($145,000); New York ($120,000); Los Angeles ($115,000); and Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, California ($110,000).

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Title Annotation:NEWS ROOM
Comment:Flips account for 5.5 percent of home sales in 2015.(NEWS ROOM)
Publication:Mortgage Banking
Geographic Code:1U9CA
Date:Apr 1, 2016
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