Foreclosure Filings Down 34% In The Third Quarter (Market Watch)

Third quarter foreclosure filings down 34%: report
By Nathalie Tadena
Third-quarter foreclosures fell 34% from a year earlier, but edged up slightly from the previous quarter, a sign foreclosure activity may be slowly picking up, according to the latest report from market researcher RealtyTrac.
The number of foreclosure filings in the third quarter edged up less than 1% sequentially, reversing a trend of three consecutive quarters of declines. Default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions were reported on 610,337 U.S. properties in the latest quarter. One in every 213 U.S. housing units had a foreclosure filing during the quarter.
In September, there were 214,855 U.S. properties in varying stages of foreclosure, down 38% from last year and 6% from the previous month. It was the 12th consecutive month of year-over-year declines.
Last year, the validity of a broad swath of foreclosure proceedings came under scrutiny based on claims that banks used so-called robo-signers to rubber stamp documents without thorough vetting. RealtyTrac Chief Executive James Saccacio said there is evidence the temporary downward trend is about to change direction.
“This marginal increase in overall foreclosure activity was fueled by a 14% jump in new default notices, indicating that lenders are cautiously throwing more wood into the foreclosure fireplace after spending months spent trying to clear the chimney of sloppily filed foreclosures,” Saccacio said.
The days to complete the foreclosure process took an average of 336 days in the third quarter, the highest level since the first quarter of 2007. The average time to sell properties in the foreclosure process also hit a record high of 318 days. In the previous quarter, it took 318 days to complete the foreclosure process and 245 days to sell foreclosures.
RealtyTrac reported Nevada had the nation’s highest state foreclosure rate in the third quarter, with one in every 44 housing units receiving a foreclosure filing. California was second, followed by Arizona.
California also accounted for one-quarter of the nation’s total foreclosure activity with 153,051 filings, the highest total of any state. It was followed by Florida, Georgia and Illinois.

Reach Out