New N.C. foreclosures down in 2014
Posted February 17, 2015
Raleigh, N.C. — North Carolina foreclosure filings his a 13-year low in 2014, but real estate experts say both the state and national housing markets are recovering from the foreclosure crisis that helped spur the great recession.
Records show there were 32,775 filings throughout North Carolina last year, the lowest annual total since 2001, according to the Administrative Office of the Courts. In 2010, the height of the housing crisis, there were 66,277 new foreclosure filings.
"The pattern that we're seeing in a lot of states is the new filings, the foreclosure starts, are decreasing," said Daren Blomquist, vice president at California-based RealtyTrac, a firm that tracks foreclosure starts across the United States. Improvements in the housing market and the broader economy, he said, are keeping people from getting into foreclosure problems.
However, even while first-time foreclosure cases are decreasing, Blomquist cautions that there are indications older foreclosure cases are still working their way through the system. RealtyTrac keeps tabs on the number of properties being set for foreclosure auctions and bank repossessions. While those numbers are still half what they were during the height of the housing crisis in 2010 – 2,303 houses in January versus 4,844 in August of 2010 – they have ticked up over the past year from a decade-long-low hit in November of 2013.
Blomquist said that those cases were mainly older foreclosures that had been filed but then delayed, many of them through government-sponsored programs to help people avoid losing their houses or sell out before the foreclosure process completed.
"While those programs did help a lot of people, there are also some people for whom it didn't take," Blomquist said. Those cases which had been in abeyance are now completing the foreclosure process, he said.
There have been similar patterns in states like California where new foreclosure cases dipped as the over all number of houses entering the latter stages of foreclosure spiked, he said.
Nationally, according to RealtyTrac data, 67 percent of all loans in various stages of the foreclosure process were issued by banks between 2004 and 2008.