Foreclosure Activity Drops Throughout The Most Foreclosure-Heavy States

Foreclosure Change By State (January 2011)

Foreclosure activity is slowing. According to foreclosure-tracker RealtyTrac, the number of foreclosure filings dropped 17 percent on an annual basis last month. Monthly filings ticked higher 1 percent after a combined 23 percent decrease through November and December 2010.

The phrase “foreclosure filing” is a catch-all term, comprising default notices, scheduled auctions, and bank repossessions. 

January marked the third straight month of sub-300,000 filings after 20 straight months above it.

As compared to January 2010, six of the nation’s 10 most foreclosure-heavy states posted an annual foreclosure filing reduction. The remaining four showed modest worsening.

It’s noteworthy that states like California and Florida posted declines of 7 percent and 54 percent, respectively, and that Nevada posted a relatively-low 3 percent gain. These three states have been at the leading edge of foreclosure activity since 2007. Their subsequent recoveries, therefore, may foreshadow a better housing market ahead.

Or, this may be lasting effects from the “robo-signer” controversy.

Regardless, home buyers continue to clamor for distressed homes.

According to the National Association of REALTORS®, properties in various stages of the foreclosure and short sale process are selling at discounts in the range of 10-15 percent so it’s no wonder they now account for 36 percent of all home resales. Buying a foreclosure can be a great “deal”.  They can be more trouble and cost than they’re worth.

Therefore, If you’re in the market for a foreclosed home , be sure to speak with a licensed real estate agent. The process of buying a distressed home is different from buying a non-distressed home. An experienced professional can help make sure you negotiate your best possible price.

Foreclosure Activity Falls For The Second Straight Month, Drops To 30-Month Low

Foreclosure concentration December 2010According to foreclosure-tracking firm RealtyTrac, the number of foreclosure filings nationwide dropped for the second straight month in December. After falling 21 percent in November, filings were down by an additional 2 percent in December.

“Foreclosure filing” is a catch-all term, comprising default notices, scheduled auctions, and bank repossessions.

Like most months, a small number of states dominated December’s national foreclosure figures. 6 states accounted for more than 50 percent of all bank repossessions.

  1. California : 17% of all repossessions
  2. Florida : 11% of all repossessions
  3. Arizona : 6% of all repossessions
  4. Michigan : 6% of all repossessions
  5. Texas : 6% of all repossessions
  6. Nevada : 4% of all repossessions

December’s foreclosure filings fell to its lowest levels since June 2008, but we can’t read into the report too much just yet. Foreclosure volume continue to be dampened by lawsuits and moratoriums related to controversy surrounding the so-called robo-signers.

Foreclosure activity may have lessened in December anyway, but we can’t know for certain. 

Distressed properties are in high demand among home buyers, accounting for one-third of all home sales; typically sold at a steep, 15 percent discount as compared to non-distressed properties.

Buying foreclosures can be a terrific “deal”.

That said, buying a foreclosed home is different from buying a non-foreclosed home. Specifically, because you’re buying from a bank and not a person, contracts may vary from what’s “customary” and negotiations may be drawn-out.

It’s one reason why buyers  — first-timers and investors alike — should talk with a real estate agent before writing an offer for a foreclosed property. You can learn a lot from the internet, but when it comes time to actually purchase a home, you’ll want an experienced professional on your side.