November Marks Nine-Month High for U.S. Home Repossessions

November was a busy month for real estate statistics with many peaks and valleys. November topped the nine-month high for U.S. home repossessions, while foreclosure numbers started to decline to the lowest point seen in six years.

According to RealtyTrac Inc., in November 2012,

  • 59,134 homes were completely foreclosed on by banks
  • Banks saw their first annual increase in repossessions since October 2010
  • 77,494 homes were reported at the start of the foreclosure process, including homes that were up for auction for the first time ever, which was a of 13 percent decrease from October 2012 and down 28 percent since November 2011
  • The least amount of foreclosures were accounted for since December 2006 with a record 72,163 foreclosed homes

With a decrease in foreclosure starts and an increase of lenders regaining their properties, banks are starting to complete more foreclosures on homes with unpaid mortgages over a year or two. However, banks and mortgage providers prefer short sales as an alternative.

Currently there is almost 1 million homes in the U.S. that are in some point of the foreclosure process, and there are several factors that are known to delay the process. A few years ago foreclosures were more severe. Today, federal and state lawmakers are putting forth efforts to delay the foreclosure process or make finance alterations a more likely choice for homeowners.

Some homeowners have avoided foreclosure due to the improving real estate market and growing home prices in 2012.

The top ten states for the highest foreclosure rates include Florida, Nevada, Illinois, California, South Carolina, Ohio, Arizona, Georgia, Michigan and Indiana.