Foreclosures Plunge 65% from Peak

Foreclosure inventory plunged nearly 26 percent and the number of completed foreclosures fell by nearly 16 percent in March, according to CoreLogic’s March 2015 National Foreclosure Report, released Tuesday.

In March, there were 41,000 completed foreclosures, down from 48,000 a year ago. That represents a 65 percent decrease from the peak of completed foreclosures in September 2010. Completed foreclosures are the total number of homes actually lost to foreclosure.

The National Association of REALTORS® reported that distressed sales – including foreclosures and short sales – accounted for 10 percent of sales in March, down from 14 percent a year ago. Foreclosures and short sales sold for an average discount of 16 percent below market value in March.

The trend of fewer distressed sales is likely to stick around as more home owners keep up with their mortgage payments. CoreLogic reports that the number of mortgages in serious delinquency fell by 19.1 percent year-over-year with 3.9 percent of mortgages now in serious delinquency (defined as 90 days or more past due). That marks the lowest delinquency rate since May 2008.

“Foreclosures and serious delinquency rates continue to drop as the home purchase market begins to emerge from its eight-year slump,” says Anand Nallathambi, president and CEO of CoreLogic. “Based on the current trends in completed foreclosure rates, we expect the foreclosure inventory to drop below 1.3 percent by midyear, a level not seen since the end of 2007. Many states in the Northeast and Midwest, as well as Florida, still have elevated levels of distressed housing, but they are making more rapid progress as of late. In March, foreclosures in these areas accounted for a large proportion of completed foreclosures.”

The five states with the highest number of completed foreclosures in the past year are Florida, Michigan, Texas, Georgia, and Ohio.

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