Why does Trulia play games with sales data?

Asked by Efrain Rojas, Los Angeles, CA Thu Feb 14, 2008

The property profile for 1010 Kathy St in the city of Los Banos is listed as a recent sale at $403K. I referenced this property on Realtytrac.com and it turns out this property was "bought" by CWALT, the REO liquidation branch of Countrywide Mortgage. Is Trulia sharing a motel room with Mr.Mozilo?

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Efrain Rojas, Home Buyer, Los Angeles, CA
Fri Feb 15, 2008
First of all, there is no disclaimer stating that Sale may not mean sale at all. Second, If Realtytrac and Trulia access the same databases, why do they not reflect the same data? At the very least it is misleading. Also, very few if any REOs will be offered at a higher price. If it were possible to sell at a higher price, it wouldn't be an REO. Also, if the "sales" data is used to calculate average selling price in an area, then that information is misleading as well. How's the market in Riverside? Selling a lot of houses?
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Christopher…, Agent, Hemet, CA
Fri Feb 15, 2008
The sale data you refer to reflects the sale data from County records which is a source for sale data on Trulia. Even when a property is foreclosed, a "sale" in this case. It is a transfer of title through foreclosure that has actually taken place. The investor, in the case of foreclosure, is taking title to the property and recording that fact with the County Recorder. This is why you see "sale" data being reported. Nothing "fishy" just another reason why, when researching sale data, you must take comparable data with a grain of salt in the absence of more thorough investigation. Just because an investor took title through foreclosure at a certain amount, does not mean the property will be offered as an REO for that price. Some will be substantially higher and some will be far less.
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