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FORECLOSURE AND BANKRUPTCY

Fewer Foreclosures As Housing Market Continues Its Recovery

Written By:
July 17, 2013 at 12:26 AM

Following along with the recovery of the housing market, the number of foreclosures continues to decline— falling 14 percent in June and hitting the lowest monthly volume since December 2006 with a total of 127,790 homes. The real estate market peaked in June/July of 2006.

According to the real estate data firm RealtyTrac, total foreclosure filings-- notices of default, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions, decreased to 127,790 and 35 percent on a year-over-year basis. Filings have plummeted 14 percent since May.

Highest level

RealtyTrac’s vice-president Daren Blomquist said that the housing market could attain a level-- unseen since before the housing market crashed in 2008, by the end of 2013. However, mortgage lenders increased their filings by 34 percent for foreclosure auctions for judicial scheduled foreclosures.

According to Blomquist, "Halfway through 2013 it's becoming increasingly evident that foreclosures are no longer a problem nationally, [although] they continue to be a thorn in the side of several state and local markets."

Here are the five states with the highest foreclosure filings in June:

  • Florida
  • Nevada
  • Illinois
  • Ohio
  • Georgia

Florida continues to lead the nation with the top five metro areas in foreclosure filings-- Florida, Miami, Orlando, Jacksonville, Ocala, and Tampa and 12 of the top 20 locations.

Initial foreclosure notices fell in June from the prior month in 38 states. Nevada (down 84 Colorado, New Jersey, Illinois and Florida experienced the biggest decline in filings.

The number of homes repossess by the banks reached a pace of 420,000 homes a year. Historically, the average is more like 250,000 units annually. States with statutes that require lenders to go through a judicial foreclosure process continue to work through a slew of backlogged foreclosure cases. The judicial foreclosure process is supervised by the court.

These files accumulated during the moratorium put in place after the news of the robo-signing scandal broke in October 2010. Blomquist believes that lenders are pushing these cases through the court system now to take advantage of rising home prices.

“It is an opportune time for lenders to dispose of these distressed properties," said Blomquist.

Blomquist also said that appreciating residential property values across the nation help many homeowners gain the equity they need to stay in their homes. These people can stay in their homes and mortgages refinance or sell to avoid foreclosure.

Year-over-Year Filings

In the first half of the year, the Midyear 2013 U.S. Foreclosure Market Report shows 801,359 U.S. homes with foreclosure filings for the first two quarters of the year. It’s a 19 percent decline over the previous six month period and 23 percent lower that the first half of 2012.

In the first half of 2013, Florida, Nevada, and Illinois posted the top foreclosure rates. Nationwide, one in 164 homes with home loans had at least on foreclosure filing from January 1 to June 31, 2013, says the report.

Data from the second quarter of 2013 shows that it took an average of 526 days to process foreclosures—from the initial notice to completed foreclosure. In the first quarter of the year, the process averaged 477 days.

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