U.S. Foreclosure Activity Decreases 7 Percent in April 2016

RealtyTrac released its April 2016 U.S. Foreclosure Activity data this week, which shows that 100,932 U.S. properties with foreclosure filings during the month, down 7 percent from the previous month and down 20 percent from a year ago — the ninth consecutive month with a year-over-year decrease.

Below are some high-level highlights from the data, which is available in more granular detail upon request to pr@realtytrac.com.

  • Overall foreclosure activity back to 2006 levels, not yet at 2005 levels. The 100,932 properties with foreclosure filings in April was below 2006 levels when the average was 104,000 a month, but still not quite back to 2005 levels when the average was 75,000 a month.


  • Bank repossessions specifically (REO) were down annually for second consecutive month following 12 consecutive months of annual increases that ended in February. RealtyTrac had previously predicted that the REO surge would be temporary as banks cleared out some of the last of their lingering foreclosure inventory from the housing crisis, and that appears to be the case.


  • Bank repossessions increased from a year ago in 23 states, counter to the national trend, including Massachusetts (up 132 percent), Alabama (up 46 percent), South Carolina (up 36 percent), Minnesota (up 24 percent), Maryland (up 21 percent), Texas (up 18 percent), and New York (up 6 percent).



  • Foreclosure starts decreased annually by 15 percent, the 10th consecutive month where U.S. foreclosure starts have decreased on a year-over-year basis.


  • Foreclosure starts increased from a year ago in 20 states, counter to the national trend, including Connecticut (up 142 percent), Arizona (up 63 percent), Virginia (up 14 percent), Maryland (up 11 percent), and Massachusetts (up 9 percent).



  • Top state foreclosure rates were Maryland, New Jersey, Delaware, Florida and Nevada. All but Nevada are judicial states.


  • Counter to the national trend, foreclosure activity did increase from a year ago in 17 states, including Connecticut (up 61 percent), Massachusetts (up 43 percent), Virginia (up 16 percent), Maryland (up 10 percent), and New Jersey (up 5 percent).


  • Top metro foreclosure rates were Atlantic City, New Jersey; Trenton, New Jersey; Lakeland-Winter Haven, Florida; Reading, Pennsylvania; and Baltimore, Maryland (among metropolitan statistical areas with a population of 200,000 or more).


  • Three of the nation’s 20 largest metro areas posted a year-over-year increase in foreclosure activity: Boston (up 33 percent); Washington, D.C. (up 19 percent); and Phoenix (up 2 percent).

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