Crye-Leike, REALTORS On Chattanooga News Channel 9 Featuring Crye-Leike Founder and CEO Harold Crye

As reported By Derek Dellinger at WTVC-TV NewsChannel 9 in Chattanooga, TN


House hunting in a nationwide foreclosure crisis can be good if you’re the buyer, but bad if you’re the seller.


How does the Tennessee Valley compare to many of the region’s hardest hit by the housing crunch.


Jonathan Charlton is a relatively recent arrival to the Chattanooga area. He’s got a lease on a home in Ooltewah, but he’s looking for a place of his own.


Charlton said, “I’m looking at a couple of houses, maybe on the other side of 58, Harrison, and in this neighborhood right here. I’m looking for something that has a yard for my dogs.”


The nationwide foreclosure crisis has made a rush of homes available. Some of which Charlton has looked at recently.


“For the money, I’ve looked at 3 or 4 foreclosure homes because you can get a good house cheap,” he said. “And there’s been a lot of houses in good shape, you know.”


The Tennessee Valley isn’t totally immune to the housing crunch. According to the website, Hamilton County now has around 179 foreclosed homes available.


In Whitfield County, there 72 homes. In Bradley County, 37. And in Catoosa County, 20.


The numbers, according to Crye-Lieke Realtors president and CEO Harold Crye, aren’t discouraging.


In Chattanooga, the overall number of sales in the market are down, but the houses prices haven’t shown much of a depreciation at all,” he said.


Crye says that’s part of the reason he opened up 2 realty offices in the Ooltewah area just today.


We’re in Memphis, Memphis market’s off about 20 percent. We’re in Nashville and it’s off about 18-30 percent. We’re in Atlanta and it’s off 25 percent.”


And Crye-Lieke broker Jay Young, who specializes in foreclosed homes, says that despite the development, foreclosures are still coming in.


There’s more out there,” said Young. “I mean, I know of more than I probably did a year ago at this time, but I don’t think it’s anything alarming.”


Charlton says, even in his subdivision, there are a lot of people looking to sell their home, and he doesn’t know what the future will bring. But that’s not stopping him from shopping around in what realtors are calling a buyer’s market.


I’m looking now,” he said. “Hopefully I’ll have a house by the time my lease is up.”


Property assessors in both Hamilton and Bradley Counties tell us so far this year, they’ve had a total of 324 foreclosures.


That compared to just over a thousand for all of last year.


In Bradley County, they’ve already had over 2-hundred foreclosures this year.


It is not as much as Hamilton County, but that’s compared to just 174 for all of 2007.