Foreclosure Activity Increases 12 Percent in August
Activity Up 27 Percent From August 2007
Foreclosure filings — default notices, auction sale notices and bank repossessions — were reported on 303,879 U.S. properties in August, a 12 percent increase from the previous month and a 27 percent increase from August 2007, according to RealtyTrac's August 2008 U.S. Foreclosure Market Report™. The report also shows that one in every 416 U.S. households received a foreclosure filing during the month.
“In August the total number of U.S. properties that received foreclosure filings as well as the national foreclosure rate were both the highest we’ve seen in any month since we began issuing our report in January 2005; however, the annual increase of 27 percent was actually substantially lower than in previous months this year, when it was hovering around 50 to 65 percent,” said James J. Saccacio, chief executive officer of RealtyTrac. “The lower annual percentage increase this month is due to a big spike in activity last August — particularly in default activity. Over the past few months we’ve seen annual increases in default activity and auction activity moderating, and that trend continued in August, with default activity up just 10 percent from a year ago and auction activity up 7 percent from a year ago.
“The increases in default and auction activity could be slowing down partly as the result of new legislation passed in several states that is designed to give homeowners in distress more time before foreclosure proceedings are initiated. In addition, some lenders are adopting loan servicing guidelines that encourage more pro-active approaches to helping homeowners avoid foreclosure. The question now is whether these measures will actually reduce foreclosures or simply cause a temporary lull in foreclosure activity.”
Nevada, California, Arizona post top state foreclosure rates
With one in every 91 households receiving a foreclosure filing in August, Nevada continued to document the nation’s highest state foreclosure rate for the 20th consecutive month. Foreclosure filings were reported on 11,706 Nevada properties, a 16 percent increase from the previous month and an 89 percent increase from August 2007.
California continued to document the nation’s second highest state foreclosure rate, with one in every 130 households receiving a foreclosure filing in August, and Arizona registered the third highest state foreclosure rate, with one in every 182 households receiving a foreclosure filing during the month.
Other states with foreclosure rates ranking among the top 10 were Florida, Michigan, Georgia, Ohio, Colorado, Illinois and Indiana. Michigan, Georgia, Ohio and Colorado all reported annual decreases in foreclosure activity.
California accounts for one-third of U.S. foreclosure activity
Foreclosure filings were reported on 101,724 California properties in August, one-third of the national total and the most of any state. The state’s foreclosure activity increased more than 40 percent from the previous month and more than 75 percent from August 2007.
Florida posted the second highest total in August, with foreclosure filings reported on 44,000 properties during the month — a 4 percent decrease from the previous month but still up nearly 30 percent from August 2007. One in every 194 Florida properties received a foreclosure filing in August, the nation’s fourth highest state foreclosure rate.
Foreclosure filings were reported on 14,333 Arizona properties in August, the nation’s third highest state total. Arizona foreclosure activity was up 7 percent from the previous month and nearly 63 percent from August 2007.
California, Florida and Arizona together accounted for more than half of the nation’s foreclosure activity.
Despite a nearly 13 percent annual decrease in foreclosure activity, Michigan documented the nation’s fourth highest state foreclosure total in August, with foreclosure filings reported on 13,605 properties during the month.
Other states with total properties with foreclosure filings among the 10 highest were Nevada, Ohio, Texas, Illinois, Georgia and New Jersey.
California cities dominate top metro foreclosure rates
California cities accounted for eight of the top 10 metro foreclosure rates out of the 230 metro areas tracked in the August report. Stockton was No. 1, with one in every 50 households receiving a foreclosure filing during the month, followed by Merced, Modesto, Vallejo-Fairfield and Riverside-San Bernardino in the Nos. 2 to 5 spots. Other California cities in the top 10 were Bakersfield, Salinas-Monterey and Sacramento in the Nos. 8 to 10 spots.
The Cape Coral-Fort Myers, Fla., metro area dropped from the top spot in the metro foreclosure rate rankings in July to No. 6 in August thanks in part to a 3 percent dip in foreclosure activity. One in every 66 Cape Coral-Fort Myers households received a foreclosure filing in August, more than six times the national average.
Las Vegas registered the seventh highest metro foreclosure rate in August, with one in every 75 households receiving a foreclosure filing during the month. The metro area’s foreclosure activity was up nearly 14 percent from the previous month and 83 percent from August 2007.
The RealtyTrac Monthly U.S. Foreclosure Market Report provides a count of the total number of properties with at least one foreclosure filing reported during the month — broken out by type of filing at the state and national level. Data is also available at the individual county level. RealtyTrac’s report incorporates documents filed in all three phases of foreclosure: Default — Notice of Default (NOD) and Lis Pendens (LIS); Auction — Notice of Trustee Sale and Notice of Foreclosure Sale (NTS and NFS); and Real Estate Owned, or REO properties (that have been foreclosed on and repurchased by a bank). If more than one foreclosure document is filed against a property during the month — which is extremely rare — only the most recent filing is counted in the report. The report also checks if the same type of document was filed against a property in a previous month. If so, and if that previous filing occurred within the estimated foreclosure timeframe for the state the property is in, the report does not count the property in the current month.
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