The long-feared backlog of foreclosures that accumulated during the Robogate processing slowdown in 2010 and 2011 has declined further as the number of new foreclosures dwindled in August and completed foreclosures are being quickly absorbed in markets hungry for discount priced distress sales.
CoreLogic reported today foreclosure inventories have fallen to their lowest level since April 2010. Some 1.3 million homes, or 3.2 percent of all homes with a mortgage, were in the national foreclosure inventory as of August 2012 a decline from 1.4 million, or 3.4 percent, in August 2011. Month-over-month, the national foreclosure inventory was unchanged from July 2012 to August 2012. The foreclosure inventory is the share of all mortgaged homes in any stage of the foreclosure process.
In August, there were 57,000 completed foreclosures, down from 75,000 in August 2011 and 58,000 in July 2012. Since the financial crisis began in September 2008, there have been approximately 3.8 million completed foreclosures nationwide.
“The continuing downward trend in foreclosures and a gradual clearing of the shadow inventory are important signals that the recovery in housing is gaining traction,” said Anand Nallathambi, president and CEO of CoreLogic. “The reduction in foreclosure volumes is to some degree being facilitated by the rising popularity of alternative resolution methods, such as short sales and loan modifications.”
“August marks the fourth month in a row there were fewer completed foreclosures, which is more evidence that the housing industry is finding its footing,” said Mark Fleming, chief economist for CoreLogic. “While we are seeing improvement on a national level, there remain higher concentrations of foreclosures in some areas with five states accounting for nearly half of all completed foreclosures nationwide during the last year.”
The five states with the highest foreclosure inventory as a percentage of all mortgaged homes were: Florida (11.0 percent), New Jersey (6.5 percent), New York (5.2 percent), Illinois (4.8 percent) and Nevada (4.6 percent). All except Nevada are judicial states.
The five states with the lowest foreclosure inventory as a percentage of all mortgaged homes were: Wyoming (0.5 percent), Alaska (0.8 percent), North Dakota (0.8 percent), Nebraska (0.9 percent) and South Dakota (1.1 percent).