This won’t take long. It’s not like I want to write about this topic. It’s just that I feel obligated to say something here, because if you’re reading the mainstream news… or the lack of mainstream news… it could seem that the foreclosure crisis is now behind us… AND IT’S NOT.
In fact, I can tell you that it’s not even close.
Maybe the mainstream media has simply gotten tired of the topic. And it’s not like they’ve ever had a particularly good handle on what’s going on in real life when it come to foreclosures in general. So, perhaps I shouldn’t be surprised at the latest coverage, or lack thereof.
But I am surprised.
As recently as September of last year, RealtyTrac has been reporting that the crisis is “well behind us.” In its U.S. Foreclosure Market Report™ for August 2014, were reported on 116,913 U.S. properties in August, an increase of 7 percent from the previous month but still down 9 percent from a year ago.
Now, it’s important to realize that RealtyTrac defines “foreclosure filings” as including, “default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions.” That means that all of the delinquent loans on which no Notice of Default has been sent out… yet… aren’t included. And there are always plenty of those. (For the record, I wrote about RealtyTrac’s September 2014 report on September 20th last year, and explained in detail what I found to be wrong or misleading.)
Still, RealtyTrac concludes the report’s numbers as reflecting, “the smallest decrease in the last 47 consecutive months of year-over-year declines in U.S. foreclosure activity.”
And, RealtyTrac’s vice president, Daren Blomquist, referring to the September 2014 report was quoted as saying…
“The August foreclosure numbers demonstrate that although the foreclosure crisis is well behind us, the messy business of cleaning up the distress lingering from the housing bust continues in many markets. The annual increase in foreclosure auctions — the first since the robo-signing controversy rocked the foreclosure industry back in late 2010 — indicates mortgage servicers are finally adjusting to the new paradigms for proper foreclosure that have been implemented in many states, whether by legislation or litigation or both.”