Foreclosures Are Still Declining

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Data from CoreLogic shows the foreclosure inventory declined by 24.5 percent and completed foreclosures declined by 6.9 percent compared with May 2015. The number of completed foreclosures nationwide decreased year over year from 41,000 in May 2015 to 38,000 in May 2016, representing a decrease of 67.9 percent from the peak of 117,813 in September 2010.

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The foreclosure inventory represents the number of homes at some stage of the foreclosure process and completed foreclosures reflect the total number of homes lost to foreclosure. Since the financial crisis began in September 2008, there have been approximately 6.3 million completed foreclosures nationally, and since homeownership rates peaked in the second quarter of 2004, there have been approximately 8.3 million homes lost to foreclosure.

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As of May 2016, the national foreclosure inventory included approximately 390,000, or 1.0 percent, of all homes with a mortgage compared with 517,000 homes, or 1.3 percent, in May 2015. The May 2016 foreclosure inventory rate is the lowest for any month since October 2007.

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CoreLogic also reports that the number of mortgages in serious delinquency (defined as 90 days or more past due including loans in foreclosure or REO) declined by 21.6 percent from May 2015 to May 2016, with 1.1 million mortgages, or 2.8 percent, in this category. The May 2016 serious delinquency rate is the lowest in more than eight years, since October 2007.

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“The foreclosure rate fell to 1 percent in May, which is twice the long-term average of 0.5 percent. However, this masks the underlying progress at the state level,” said Dr. Frank Nothaft, chief economist for CoreLogic. “Twenty-nine states had foreclosure rates below the national average, and all but North Dakota experienced declines in their foreclosure rate compared to the prior year.”

“Delinquency and foreclosure rates continue to drop as we experience the benefits of a combination of tight underwriting, job and income growth and a steady rise in home prices. We expect these factors to remain in place for the remainder of this year and for delinquency and foreclosure rates to decline even further,” said Anand Nallathambi, president and CEO of CoreLogic. “As we finally move past the housing crisis, we need to increase our focus on expanding the supply of affordable housing and access to credit for first-time homebuyers in sustainable ways to ensure the long-term health of the U.S. housing market.”