Google Map Foreclosure Tricks

Via Barry Ritholz.

Prepare yourself to be floored:

Google Maps keeps evolving, expanding the ability to drill down into granular detail. The latest updated trick? Mapping foreclosures for sale.

This great and terrible Google trick has been around at least since 2008 — but it seems to have become much more robust earlier this year (See Dregs of the Future‘s post in January 2010).

Our friends at Chart Porn — a blog that got its name from one of our posts (honest!) — remind us of this, with a step-by-step lesson of how to use Google maps:

Google Maps Foreclosure Listings

1. Punch in any US address into Google Maps.

2. Your options are Earth, Satellite, Map, Traffic and . . . More. (Select “More”)

3. The drop down menu gives you a check box option for “Real Estate.”

4. The left column will give you several options (You may have to select “Show Options”)

5. Check the box marked “Foreclosure.”

I wanted to demonstrate the full extent of Foreclosures in the US, so after setting GMaps on foreclosure listings, I slowly zoomed out of the map. Voila! Most foreclosures that are for sale in the USA are now showing on your screen.

Note: This map does not reveal any of the millions of REOs that have already been sold by the banks that hold them.

But the maps do reveal an entire nation littered with foreclosure sales. It is an ugly and graphic depiction of how much inventory is out there, and why housing is stillmany years away from being healthy.

Let’s try to zoom in and see exactly the extent of foreclosures in Florida, one of the biggest boom & bust regions. …

Visit Barry’s site to see the Maps.