Monthly Completed Foreclosures Show 22% Year-Over-Year Decline, But Far from 'Normal' Level

The foreclosure crisis is far from abating, with average completed monthly foreclosures still at more than double their pre-crisis level and the inventory of distressed homes still at three times the “normal” volume before the housing crash, an updated analysis shows.

But progress continues, according to CoreLogic‘s newly released analysis of homes lost which shows 45,000 foreclosures were completed in August 2014. That’s a 22.2 percent year-over-year decline from 58,000 in August 2013.
The foreclosure inventory in August was down 2.6 percent from July 2014, representing 34 months of consecutive year-over-year declines.
By comparison, before the decline in the housing market in 2007, completed foreclosures averaged 21,000 per month nationwide between 2000 and 2006. On a month-over-month basis, completed foreclosures were up slightly by 1.1 percent.
Completed foreclosures are an indication of the total number of homes actually lost to foreclosure.
“Clearly there has been a large improvement in the market the last few years, but five years into the economic expansion the foreclosure inventory remains at nearly three times the normal level,” Sam Khater, deputy chief economist at CoreLogic. “Since homeownership rates peaked in the second quarter of 2004, there have been 7 million completed foreclosures, which account for 15 percent of all mortgages.”
About 629,000 homes in the United States were in some stage of foreclosure as of August 2014, compared to 936,000 in August 2013, a decrease of 32.8 percent.
This was the 34th consecutive month with a year-over-year decline. As of August 2014, the foreclosure inventory represented 1.6 percent of all homes with a mortgage, compared to 2.4 percent in August 2013.
“The number of foreclosures completed during the last 12 months is at the lowest level since November of 2007,”
said Anand Nallathambi, president and CEO of CoreLogic. “At current foreclosure rates, the shadow inventory could fall below 500,000 units by year-end which could provide a solid boost to the recovery in housing in 2015.”

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