Judicial Foreclosure Auctions Elevate Foreclosure Activity by Carrie Bay 11/14/2013

Foreclosure auctions in judicial states rose annually for the 16th straight month in October. RealtyTrac recorded a total of 30,023 scheduled judicial foreclosure auctions nationwide last month, up 10 percent from the previous month and up 7 percent from October 2012.

States with the biggest annual increases in scheduled judicial foreclosure auctions included Maryland (+177 percent), Delaware (+142 percent), New York (+98 percent), New Jersey (+97 percent), Pennsylvania (+58 percent), Connecticut (+35 percent), and Florida (+32 percent).

“The backlog of delayed judicial foreclosures continues to make its way through the pipeline, with many of these properties now being scheduled for the public auction after starting the foreclosure process last year or earlier this year,” said Daren Blomquist, RealtyTrac VP.

Blomquist says lenders are moving these properties to public auction more rapidly because there is strong demand from institutional investors looking for buy-to-rent opportunities. In addition, he notes that rising home prices mean more loan losses can be recouped, either by selling off foreclosure assets to investors at auction or by repossessing and reselling properties as bank owned.

Overall, RealtyTrac reported 133,919 U.S. properties with a foreclosure filing—default notice, scheduled auction, or bank repossession—in October. That represents a 2 percent increase from the previous month but a 28 percent


decrease from a year earlier. RealtyTrac’s data shows one in every 978 U.S. housing units received a foreclosure filing during the month of October.

According to RealtyTrac’s foreclosure market report released Thursday, foreclosure was initiated for the first time on 58,939 homes nationwide. Foreclosure starts were up 2 percent from the previous month but down 34 percent from October 2012, marking the 15th consecutive month where foreclosure starts decreased on an annual basis.

New foreclosures were up from the previous month in 22 states, including Colorado (+124 percent), Florida (+36 percent), and Illinois (+30 percent).

RealtyTrac says there were a total of 37,775 bank repossessions (REO) across the country in October, down 1 percent from the previous month and down 29 percent from a year earlier. October was the 11th consecutive month in which bank repossessions decreased annually.

Bank repossessions increased from a year earlier in 15 states, including Oklahoma (+59 percent), Maryland (+54 percent), Virginia (+47 percent), Ohio (+30 percent), and Washington (+30 percent).

States with the five highest foreclosure rates in October included Florida, Nevada, Maryland, Ohio, and Illinois, according to RealtyTrac’s report.

Among the nation’s 20 largest metro areas, the highest foreclosure rates were in Miami, Tampa, Chicago, Baltimore, and Riverside-San Bernardino, California. The biggest annual increase in foreclosure activity last month was found in Baltimore, where filings were up 296 percent from October 2012, marking the 13th consecutive month with an annual increase in activity.

Other metros making up RealtyTrac’s top-five for foreclosure increases included Washington, D.C. (+48 percent; fifth consecutive month with an annual increase); New York (+20 percent; 16th consecutive increase); Philadelphia (+15 percent; eighth consecutive annual increase); and Miami (+7 percent for first annual increase after two consecutive months of yearly declines).


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