RealtyTrac’s year-end report released Thursday shows foreclosure filings – including default, auction, and bank repossession notices – were reported on 1,887,777 U.S. properties in 2011. Of that total, 804,423 homes were taken back by lenders as REO. Last year’s tally of nearly 1.9 million properties with a foreclosure filing seems staggering, but it’s actually the lowest reported since 2007. It’s 34 percent below 2010, 33 percent below 2009, and 19 percent below the 2008 total.
RealtyTrac’s newly appointed CEO Brandon Moore describes foreclosure activity last year as being in “full delay mode.” “We expect that trend to continue this year, boosting foreclosure activity for 2012 higher than it was in 2011, though still below the peak of 2010,” Moore said. On the national stage, properties foreclosed in the fourth quarter took an average of 348 days to complete the process, up from 336 days in the third quarter and up from 305 days in the fourth quarter of 2010.
Arizona registered the nation’s second highest foreclosure rate for the third year in a row, with 4.14 percent of its homes (one in 24) receiving at least one filing in 2011. California registered the nation’s third highest foreclosure rate for all of 2011, with 3.19 percent (one in every 31 homes).