Number of completed foreclosures nationwide tumbles 33%

October 08, 2013 01:50PM

Foreclosure inventory dropped in August, while shadow inventory fell to the lowest level since August 2008.

There were 48,000 completed foreclosures, the number of homes actually lost to foreclosure, nationwide in August, according to a report from property information group CoreLogic. That figure is down 33 percent from 72,000 during the same month in 2012. On a month-to-month basis, foreclosures increased 1.3 percent from 47,000 in July.

“The foreclosure inventory continues to improve, as exhibited by these recent numbers,” Dr. Mark Fleming, chief economist for CoreLogic, said in a release. “A surge in completed foreclosures and a rise in the foreclosure inventory is unlikely given continued house price improvements and shortages of supply in many markets.”

Florida had the highest number of completed foreclosures — 111,000 — for the 12 months ending August 2013, while the District of Columbia had the lowest with 94. New York had 3,670, a -0.4 percent change from the same period one year prior.

Overall residential shadow inventory, meanwhile, was 1.9 million homes as of July 2013 — a value of $293 billion and representing a supply of 3.7 months. That was down 22 percent from the same time in 2012, when inventory was at 2.4 million and down 38 percent from its 3 million-home peak in 2010.

Before the housing market slide in 2007, completed foreclosures averaged 21,000 per month nationwide between 2000 and 2006. Since the crisis, there have been roughly 4.5 million completed foreclosures in the country, and approximately 939,000 homes in the U.S. were in some stage of foreclosure as of August 2013.

There were roughly 2.1 million mortgages, or 5.3 percent, in serious delinquency at the end of August 2013. — Julie Strickland