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Completed Foreclosures Surpass 1 Million

224,394 foreclosure filings in November

Dec. 15, 2011

By staff

Monthly foreclosure filings fell despite a jump in California activity. Mortgage servicers have completed foreclosures on more than 1 million U.S. properties so far this year.

Residential properties that faced a foreclosure filing during November totaled 224,394. Filings included default notices, scheduled auctions and repossessions.

RealtyTrac, which provided the statistics, previously reported 230,678 foreclosures for October. RealtyTrac says its numbers are based on data collected from 2,200 U.S. counties.

In November of last year, filings were made on 262,339 properties.

A cumulative 2,281,191 foreclosures have been reported so far during 2011. However, some of the same properties might have faced a filing in more than one month. RealtyTrac's next report should present a reconciled year-to-date total.

RealtyTrac Co-Founder James Saccacio predicted in the report that an "incoming wave" of foreclosures is likely early in 2012.

Servicers processed more foreclosures in California than in any other state: 63,689. The total worsened from 55,312 the previous month. 

However, the Golden State -- which moves distressed loans through the resolution process more quickly than states like Florida -- could just be ahead of its counterparts in clearing out a logjam that has developed because of faulty affidavits, aggressive judges ruling against lenders and a wave of challenges by delinquent borrowers looking to forestall repossession.

In Florida, 24,739 properties were hit with a filing, tumbling from 33,073 a month prior.

Michigan followed with 13,777 foreclosures, then 12,398 in Illinois and 12,327 in Georgia.

With just seven filings last month, North Dakota had the fewest.

One foreclosure was filed per each 579 U.S. housing units during November. That was better than in October, when a foreclosure was filed on every 563 homes. The foreclosure rate in the same month a year prior was far worse at one-in-492.

Nevada's one-in-175 foreclosure rate was the worst in the nation -- the 59th consecutive month it held that distinction. But the Silver State whittled down its rate from the previous month's one filing for each 180 housing units. However, RealtyTrac said Nevada's rate is "artificially low" as a result of a new state law passed in October that alters its foreclosure process.

California's rate worsened to one filing for each 211 homes from October's one-in-243 rate. The state was home to nine of the nation's 10 metropolitan areas with the worst foreclosure rates. Stockton, Calif.'s, one-in-120 rate was the worst.

Arizona's one-in-256 rate followed California, then Utah's one-in-290 level and Michigan's one-in-330 rate.

Just one foreclosure was filed for every 45,205 properties in North Dakota, the best rate of any state.

Mortgages that were converted to real estate owned numbered 56,124, fewer than the 67,624 REO filings in October. Completed foreclosures were also lower than 67,428 in November 2010.

From Jan. 1 through Nov. 30, REO filings totaled 1,008,829.

With 8,283 repossessions, California had the most. But the state saw its REO activity decline from 9,770 in October. Given the increase in California's overall filings -- the upcoming months could see a surge in REO filings. Completed foreclosures in the state were almost unchanged from the same month last year.

Florida followed with 7,134 REOs, a few less than 7,184 in October.

Texas was next with 3,877, then Georgia's 3,865 and Arizona's 3,751.

South Dakota's five REOs were the fewest of any state.

224,394 foreclosure filings in November

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