Foreclosure activity slows in February: ForeclosureRadar
Foreclosure activity slowed across the United States in February as lenders continued to grapple with how to handle foreclosure documents and processing changes, foreclosure data firm ForeclosureRadar said Tuesday. The California-based firm also attributed the slowdown to February having fewer foreclosure filing and trustee sale days. "Foreclosure filings dropped to low levels not seen in quite awhile," said Sean O'Toole, CEO and founder of ForeclosureRadar.com. "We will likely see more sluggish foreclosure activity in the months ahead while lenders continue to work through lingering concerns over foreclosure documentation and deal with process changes." Filings dropped significantly in areas hindered by the recession, with notice of trustee sale filings dropping 27.9% year-over-year in Arizona and 17% in California. Meanwhile, Arizona experienced a 38.9% drop in sales back to the bank and a 14.5% drop in sales to third parties when comparing February data to January. Notice of default filings in California fell 29.6% on a year-over-year basis. The Golden State also experienced a 24.5% drop in sales back to the bank and a 20.3% decline in properties purchased by third parties. Notice of default filings in Nevada declined 25.2% in February from a month earlier, reaching their lowest levels in two years. "After two months of increased activity on the courthouse steps, foreclosure sales dropped significantly with foreclosure sales back-to-the-bank dropping 48.4% and sales to third parties down 35.3% in February 2011 as compared to the prior month," ForeclosureRadar said. Write to Kerri Panchuk.