Friday, October 16, 2009

Foreclosures Reach Record High in 3rd Quarter 2009

Foreclosures Reach Record High in 3rd Quarter 2009

According to this CNNMoney article, Foreclosures: 'Worst three months of all time', "Despite signs of broader economic recovery, number of foreclosure filings hit a record high in the third quarter - a sign the plague is still spreading." The loan modification and foreclosure prevention programs pushed by the government are just not working. The 3rd quarter of 2009 saw foreclosures hit a record high. The article quotes Rick Sharga, spokesman for RealtyTrac, as saying July 2009 through September 2009 "were the worst three months of all time. The fastest growing area is in the 180 days late-plus category, the most seriously delinquent borrowers. It's going to be a lingering problem. It's hard to envision [the banks] putting millions of properties up for sale and cratering prices. Recovery will be slow and gradual. I don't see home prices getting much better until 2013."

According to the article, "During that time, 937,840 homes received a foreclosure letter -- whether a default notice, auction notice or bank repossession, the RealtyTrac report said. That means one in every 136 U.S. homes were in foreclosure, which is a 5% increase from the second quarter and a 23% jump over the third quarter of 2008. Nevada continued to be the worst-hit state with one filing for every 23 households. But even tranquil Vermont, where the foreclosure crisis has barely brushed the housing market, saw foreclosure filings jump nearly 170% compared with the third quarter of 2008. Still, that resulted in just one filing for every 5,023 households in the state -- the best record in the country. The RealtyTrac report also unveiled the results for September, and it found that there was slight relief from foreclosure filings. Last month, notices totaled 343,638, down 4% compared with August. Unfortunately, that total accounts for 87,821 homes that were repossessed by lenders. That deluge contributed significantly to the quarter's record 237,052 repossessions, a 21% jump from the previous three months. So far this year lenders have taken back 623,852 homes."

The article quotes James Saccacio, RealtyTrac's CEO, as saying "REO activity increased from the previous quarter in all but two states and the District of Columbia, indicating that lenders may be starting to work through some of the pent-up foreclosure inventory caused by legislative delays, loan-modification efforts and high volumes of distressed properties."

The article raises concern over these record foreclosure numbers occurring despite all the government efforts to prevent foreclosures and lenders voluntarily not foreclosing on many homeowners who are many months delinquent on their mortgage payments. In short the train is coming and there is nothing that can stop it.

The article mentions that many lenders are starting the foreclosure process, but just not following through. The article quotes Jim Rokakis, treasurer for Cuyahoga County, Ohio, which includes Cleveland, as saying the lenders will "even set the date for the sheriff's sale, but they don't file the final papers. They hold it in abeyance and let the residents stay in the house." I have seen this many times. It is insane. In many cases the homeowners cannot take the stress of the whole thing so they want the foreclosure to end, but the lenders just do nothing. That is why many homeowners simply abandon their homes.

The article quotes a study by the Chicago Booth School of Business and the Kellogg School of Management that "determined that when home price declines drop home values 10% below the mortgage balances, people start to give up their homes. When "negative equity" approaches 50%, 17% of households default, even when they can still afford their mortgage payments."

The article states "the RealtyTrac statistics may understate the depth of the foreclosure mess because lender and government actions have delayed many filings. As a result, some delinquencies have not been counted on the foreclosure tallies. That means the crisis may not end quickly." As I have been saying for a while now, this foreclosure crisis is far from over because it was caused by a housing market that was built on debt, not peoples' incomes. Until prices fall back down, the market will continue to be poor.

If you are a homeowner in Middle Tennessee who cannot pay your mortgage, or your home is already in foreclosure, please contact me to discuss your options including a loan modification or a short sale. I am a Middle Tennessee distressed real estate, short sale, pre-foreclosure (preforeclosure) and foreclosure REALTOR and Expert. I serve real estate owners, homeowners and investment property owners in Rutherford County TN, Williamson County TN, Davidson County TN, Murfreesboro TN, Smyrna TN, La Vergne TN, Eagleville TN, Lascassas TN, Rockvale TN, Christiana TN, Brentwood TN, Franklin TN, Nashville TN and Belle Meade TN.

If you need to sell your home fast via a short sale, you can request help on my website at Get Help and Assistance from a Middle Tennessee Short Sale and Foreclosure REALTOR and Expert.

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