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Foreclosures, seriously delinquent mortgages fall to lowest level since 2007

CoreLogic report shows foreclosure inventory down significantly from last year

The number of homes in some stage of foreclosure and the number of seriously delinquent mortgages are now at levels not seen since late 2007, according to a new report from CoreLogic.

CoreLogic’s March 2016 National Foreclosure Report shows that the national foreclosure inventory, which is the total number of homes at some stage of the foreclosure process and completed foreclosures, was 427,000 homes.

That figure represents 1.1% of all homes in the U.S., and is down from 556,000 homes, or 1.4%, in March 2015.

March 2016’s foreclosure inventory is not only down from 2015, it’s the lowest that figure has been since October 2007.

CoreLogic’s report also showed that the foreclosure inventory declined by 23.2% and completed foreclosures declined by 14.9% when compared with March 2015.

According to CoreLogic, the number of completed foreclosures nationwide decreased year over year from 42,000 in March 2015 to 36,000 in March 2016, which equals a decrease of 69.7% from the peak of 117,782 in September 2010.

And it’s not just foreclosures that are down to pre-crisis lows.

According to CoreLogic’s report, the number of mortgages that are seriously delinquent, which is defined as 90 days or more past due and includes loans in foreclosure or REO, fell by 19.1% from March 2015 to March 2016.

In March 2016, there were 1.2 million mortgages, or 3.1% of the total number of mortgages, that were seriously delinquent.

According to CoreLogic’s data, the March 2016 serious delinquency rate is the lowest since November 2007.

The foreclosure inventory was down 2.2% in March 2016 compared with February 2016, CoreLogic’s report also showed.

"Nationally, the economy added 609,000 jobs during the first three months of 2016, and average weekly earnings grew 2% over the past year," said Frank Nothaft, chief economist for CoreLogic.

"Job and earnings growth have helped bring serious delinquency rates down in nearly every state," Nothaft continued. “However, serious delinquency rates increased in North Dakota and West Virginia, two states affected by the drop in demand for the fuel each produces."

CoreLogic’s report also showed that completed foreclosures increased by 9.3% to 36,000 in March 2016 from the 33,000 reported for February 2016.

On a state-by-state basis, the five states with the highest number of completed foreclosures for the 12 months ending in March 2016 were Florida (69,000), Michigan (48,000), Texas (28,000), Georgia (23,000) and California (23,000).

According to CoreLogic’s report, these five states accounted for approximately 41% of all completed foreclosures.

Conversely, the District of Columbia (114), North Dakota (311), West Virginia (541), Wyoming (634) and Alaska (644) had the lowest number of completed foreclosures for the 12 months ending in March 2016.

In terms of foreclosure inventory on a state-by-state basis, New Jersey (4%), New York (3.3%), Hawaii (2.3%), the District of Columbia (2.2%) and Florida (2.1%) had the highest foreclosure inventory as a percentage of all mortgaged homes in March 2016.

The five states with the lowest foreclosure inventory rate in March 2016 were Alaska (0.3%), Minnesota (0.4%), Arizona (0.4%), Colorado (0.4%) and Utah (0.4%).

"Delinquencies and foreclosure rates are now at pre-crash levels as the benefits of higher home prices, improving economic fundamentals and years of cautious underwriting are being felt across the country," said Anand Nallathambi, president and CEO of CoreLogic. "Longer term, as loans made since 2009 account for a larger share of outstanding debt, we anticipate that the serious delinquency rate will have further substantive declines."

3d rendering of a row of luxury townhouses along a street

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