In 2011 37% of the homes sold in the North County were Bank Owned Properties. Year to date for 2012 that number has dropped to 26% of the residential sales. Short sales, (where the seller is "underwater"meaning they owe more on their home then the asking price and the lender agreed to take less then the loan balance to close the sale) accounted for 17% of the sales in 2011 and year to date in 2012 they are now 21% of the sales. Combining together the short sales and bank owned properties for 2011 they accounted for 54% of the sales last year. This year together they are at 47% of the sales so far. The short sales have climbed some over the bank owned foreclosure sales as most of the large lenders now realize that it is in their interest to not have to take the property back in foreclosure and taking less on their loan balance through the short sale process can be better in many cases. The best news of course is that distressed property sales as a whole are on the decline here as a whole while the market in totality is on the upswing.