Fewer U.S. Homes Entered Foreclosure Path in November

For Sale Real Estate Sign With Foreclosure Notice
Terrance Emerson/Shutterstock

LOS ANGELES -- While foreclosures remain a concern in select states, the number of U.S. homes entering the path to foreclosure or winding up repossessed by lenders has fallen to levels not seen in more than six years.

The trend is the latest sign foreclosures are becoming less of a national factor on the housing recovery and more of a state and metropolitan-area concern.

Lenders initiated foreclosure action against 52,826 U.S. homes in November, down 10 percent from the previous month and a drop of 32 percent from November last year, according to new data from foreclosure listing firm RealtyTrac Inc.

The last time the tally of monthly foreclosure starts was lower was in December 2005, the firm said.

Foreclosure starts increased last month on an annual basis in 15 states, including Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland and Oregon.

While fewer homes entered the foreclosure pipeline in November, the number of homes completing the foreclosure process also declined.

All told, lenders took back 30,461 homes last month, down 19 percent from October and a decline of 48 percent from November last year, RealtyTrac said.

Overall, completed foreclosures sank to the lowest level since July 2007, the firm said.

The number of homes repossessed by banks increased on an annual basis in only five states:
Delaware, Maryland, Connecticut, Maine and Iowa -- all states where the courts must sign off on foreclosures, a factor that typically draws out the process longer than in other states.

Some of the decline in foreclosure activity last month was due to a seasonal slowdown as the end of the year draws near. That could mean a bump in homes sold at auction or repossessed by banks early next year, said Daren Blomquist, a vice president at RealtyTrac.

"Regionally and locally, there are going to be some jumps in foreclosure numbers in 2014, but nothing we anticipate will threaten the housing recovery," Blomquist said. "It's very safe to say that the foreclosure crisis is over and behind us."

The decline in foreclosures has come about as more homeowners are keeping up with their mortgage payments. At the same time, the U.S. housing market has emerged from a deep slump, aided by rising home prices, steady job growth and fewer troubled loans dating back to the housing-bubble days.

At the end of November, 734,205 U.S. homes were in some stage of the foreclosure process, down 24 percent from a year earlier. Another 503,577 homes were bank-owned, but not yet sold. That's down from 18 percent from November last year, the firm said.

Some 70 percent of all homes in some stage of foreclosure are tied to mortgages that were taken out between 2004 and 2008.

At their monthly pace through the first 11 months of the year, completed foreclosures are on track to total 470,000 this year, down 30 percent from last year, Blomquist said.

Foreclosures peaked in 2010 at 1.05 million and have been declining ever since.

At the state level, Florida had the highest foreclosure rate in the nation last month, with one in every 392 households in some stage of foreclosure. Even so, the number of homes in the state that entered the foreclosure process fell 46 percent from a year ago, while homes taken back by lenders declined 16 percent.

Rounding out the top 10 states by foreclosure rate were Delaware, Maryland, South Carolina, Illinois, Ohio, Connecticut, Nevada, Iowa and Utah.

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Only republicans think social security is welfare. People who cannot think for themselves. Social security is your personal account, the more you pay in the higher your monthly check is when you retire at your retirement age.

December 13 2013 at 12:40 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

What a stupid statement above...it's very safe to say the foreclosure crisis is over and behind us......it's so stupid it scares me......in 2005 this same guy was telling everyone real estate was going nowhere but higher....he even extrapolated it out 20 or 30 years and gave compelling reasons why....supply, demand yahdah yahdah yahdah......we went into the abyss......no he thinks its VERY SAFE.......scary. Look out below......that light at the end of the tunnel is FREIGHT TRAIN IMHO.....5 years of the greatest money printing in HISTORY and all we have is foreclosure pace slowed for a month....f n SCARY...not dafe

December 13 2013 at 12:01 AM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to kluj1's comment

I don't know in what State you are! Here in Tracy, California; I bought a house in 2010 and today the price doubled. In Santa Clara, California another house I won the price increased 30% since 2010. You can't find many houses for sale in the major cities in California. In Tracy a city with 85 thousand people only 80 houses for sale at the moment.

December 13 2013 at 1:29 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Evan...........Evan..........where are you? If you can't reply, how about answering in sign language?

December 12 2013 at 8:13 PM Report abuse -5 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to betty_brock's comment

So you are there. I can tell by the thumbs down. Sign some more, Evan.

December 12 2013 at 8:15 PM Report abuse -4 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to betty_brock's comment

I hope I haven't offended you, Evan. I just like to banter because it's fun.

December 12 2013 at 8:17 PM Report abuse -4 rate up rate down

Evan has a lot of nerve asking people how much money they have.

December 12 2013 at 8:09 PM Report abuse -5 rate up rate down Reply

Evan thinks Social Security is the same as welfare. Only those who don't work think that.

December 12 2013 at 8:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The reason for this is banks have made it much harder for the unqualified to buy homes which is what should have been the standard instead of CRA which mandated banks grant loans to high risk borrowers.
Notice Texas banks did not suffer the losses others did because Texas banks were not forced to follow the federal requirements. Texas banks in fact remained profitable during the banking crisis.
I hope we learned a lesson to STOP lending money to these people who will not repay it.

December 12 2013 at 6:46 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to jsmith120313's comment

Libs always blame others. Never take responsibility for buying houses they can't afford.

December 12 2013 at 8:03 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Evan, I'm praying for you and all your screen names.

December 12 2013 at 6:11 PM Report abuse -3 rate up rate down Reply

Reagan started the phone program and Bush expanded it to include cell phones. Bush expanded the food stamp program and then Bush destroyed the economy making tens of millions more elligible for them and many for housing subsidies too. Our current and actually elected president had nothing to do with any of those laws. You look very foolish. Are you this ingnorant about everything? Do you watch Fox news?

Darling you could use some anger management counseling. You are so hositle and bitter. Most of us liberals are dear. You appear to be quite out of control. Perhaps it is your Foxophobia that is getting to you and has you unable to compose yourself from posting your outrageous and outlandish comments.

December 12 2013 at 5:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply


December 12 2013 at 2:48 PM Report abuse -3 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to o.eye.feltersnatch's comment

You sound like a childish racist moron. Do you hate all black people or is it just the smart successful ones?

December 12 2013 at 5:03 PM Report abuse -3 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to whydothat's comment

You appear to be quite hostile yourself darling. How sad for you.

December 12 2013 at 5:18 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down
Welcome Charles

I don't care, Bush, Obama, Republicans, Democrats, Right OR Left wing nutjobs.
There are less foreclosures because there aren't any houses left to foreclose on and those that are, are not being placed there by the banks. They don't want or need any houses to be foreclosed on. They get less money from the Feds when they do.
They are all guilty of misfeasance, malfeasance, and playing political games that keep them in office at all our suffering. I am starting a campaign.............RE-ELECT NO ONE!!!
I know someone is going to tell me I don't know what I am talking about and espouse their own miscreant views. But the good thing about America is that I CAN have my own views.
They have all killed the middle and upper middle class and the rich get richer and the have to sit there and take it. It's just that in rearranging the economy, we have gone from 3 classes to 2 and little or nothing in the middle.....the future and backbone of the country.

December 12 2013 at 2:25 PM Report abuse +6 rate up rate down Reply