Housing market fundamentals showed more strength in May, according to foreclosure data firm RealtyTrac, as mortgage foreclosure filings fell significantly from the previous year.
In its U.S. Foreclosure Market Report, RealtyTrac found that U.S. foreclosure filings – including default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions – fell to 109,824 in May, down 5 percent from April and down 26 percent from the year before. It is now at the lowest level in over seven years, since December 2006 and the national foreclosure rate has fallen to one in every 1,199 households.
Of course, the improvements were not uniform across the country. In fact 21 states even saw increases in their monthly foreclosure filings and 11 experienced yearly jumps. Most of those states are so-called judicial states, where all foreclosures must be reviewed by a judge before completion.
Its not surprising that some of the states with the longest foreclosure timelines are those with markets still dealing with increasing foreclosure activity even as the country as a whole continues to hit new lows, said Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac in a statement. On the other hand, the increase in bank repossessions in some states with shorter foreclosure timelines like California and Oregon demonstrates there is still some pent-up foreclosure activity in those states as well.
Among those with the biggest yearly increases in foreclosure filings were Massachusetts with a 58 percent jump from May 2013 levels, New Jersey with a 37 percent increase, New York with an 18 percent rise and Indiana with a 12 percent leap.
Interestingly though, only two of those states (New Jersey and Indiana) ended up on May’s top ten list of foreclosure rates. Florida had the country’s highest foreclosure rate at one in every 436 housing units, despite have seen foreclosure activity drop 30 percent in the past year. Number two was Maryland with one in every 621 housing units receiving some type of foreclosure action. Next was Nevada with one out of every 717 households, then Illinois with one in every 790, followed by Ohio with one out of every 805 housing units. The rest of the top ten was filled out by New Jersey, Delaware, Indiana, Connecticut and South Carolina.
by Ethan Leak