U.S. Foreclosure Activity Edges Up in Third Quarter for First Increase In Three Years

RealtyTrac® (www.realtytrac.com), released its U.S. Foreclosure Market Report™ for September and the third quarter of 2014, which shows foreclosure filings — default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions — were reported on 317,171 U.S. properties in the third quarter, down 16 % from a year ago but up 0.42 % from the previous quarter — the first quarterly increase since the third quarter of 2011.

The quarterly increase in overall foreclosure activity was driven by a 2 % increase in default notices and a 7 % quarterly increase in scheduled foreclosure auctions. Meanwhile bank repossessions decreased 12 % from the previous quarter.

A total of 106,866 U.S. properties had foreclosure filings in September, down 9 % from the previous month and down 19 % from a year ago to the lowest level since July 2006 — a 98-month low. September marked the 48th consecutive month where U.S. foreclosure activity decreased on a year-over-year basis.

Other findings from the report:

Default notices were filed on 103,179 U.S. properties in the third quarter, an increase of 2 % from the previous quarter but still down 11 % from the third quarter of 2013 — the ninth consecutive quarter where default notices have decreased on a year-over-year basis nationwide.

Default notices in the third quarter increased from a year ago in 10 states, including Indiana (up 59 %), Oklahoma (up 49 %), Massachusetts (up 38 %), New Jersey (up 19 %), Iowa (up 12 %) and New York (up 2 %).

Foreclosure auctions were scheduled on 139,721 U.S. properties in the third quarter, an increase of 7 % from the previous quarter but a decrease of 1 % from the third quarter of 2013 — the 15th consecutive quarter where scheduled foreclosure auctions have decreased on a year-over-year basis nationwide.

Scheduled foreclosure auctions in the third quarter increased from a year ago in 22 states, including North Carolina (up 85 %), Oregon (up 85 %), New Jersey (up 66 %), Oklahoma (up 58%), New York (up 57 %), Connecticut (up 51 %), Colorado (up 48 %), Alabama (up 24 %), Texas (up 18 %), and Ohio (up 17 %).

Scheduled foreclosure auctions in the third quarter increased from the previous quarter in 32 states, including Michigan (up 34 %), Maryland (up 30 %), California (up 25 %), Texas (up 25 %) and Arizona (up 25 %).

Lenders repossessed 74,271 U.S. properties in the third quarter, a decrease of 12 % from the previous quarter and down 38 % from the third quarter of 2013 — the 16th consecutive quarter where REOs have decreased on a year-over-year basis nationwide. States with the five highest foreclosure rates in the third quarter were Florida, Maryland, New Jersey, Nevada, and Illinois.

Metropolitan statistical areas with the five highest foreclosure rates in the third quarter were Orlando, Atlantic City, N.J., Macon, Ga., Ocala, Fla., and Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville, Fla.

U.S. properties foreclosed in the third quarter of 2014 were in the foreclosure process an average of 615 days, up 7 % from the previous quarter and up 13 % from the third quarter of 2013 to the longest average time to foreclose since RealtyTrac began tracking in the first quarter of 2007.

States with the longest average time to foreclose in the third quarter were New Jersey (1,064 days), Florida (951 days), Hawaii (937 days), New York (902 days) and Illinois (889 days).

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