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Foreclosure filings decreased 3 percent from October and 14 percent decrease from November 2010. One in every 579 U.S. housing units with a foreclosure filing during the month, according to RealtyTrac's Foreclosure Market Report.

November Foreclosures Down 14 Percent from 2010

Foreclosure filings decreased 3 percent from October and 14 percent decrease from November 2010. One in every 579 U.S. housing units with a foreclosure filing during the month, according to RealtyTrac’s Foreclosure Market Report

Default notices were filed for the first time on a total of 71,730 U.S. properties in November, an 8 percent decrease from the previous month and down 9 percent from November 2010.

Foreclosure auctions were scheduled on 96,540 U.S. properties in November, up 13 percent from October, but still down 17 percent from November 2010. Scheduled foreclosure auctions increased more than 35 percent on a monthly basis in several states, including California (up 63 percent), Washington (up 56 percent), Ohio (up 53 percent), New Jersey (up 44 percent), and New York (up 38 percent).

Lenders repossessed (REO) a total of 56,124 U.S. properties in November, a 17 percent decrease from October and also a 17 percent decrease from November 2011. REO activity in November was at its lowest level since March 2008, a 44-month low.

“Despite a seasonal slowdown similar to what we’ve seen in each of the past four years, November’s numbers suggest a new set of incoming foreclosure waves, many of which may roll into the market as REOs or short sales sometime early next year,” said James Saccacio, co-founder of RealtyTrac. “Overall foreclosure activity is down 14 percent from a year ago, the smallest annual decrease over the past 12 months, and some bellwether states such as California, Arizona and Massachusetts actually posted year-over-year increases in foreclosure activity in November.

“Scheduled foreclosure auctions reached a nine-month high in November, corresponding to a recent surge in default notices that began back in August,” Saccacio continued. “Many of the new defaults that started the foreclosure process over the past few months are now being scheduled for public foreclosure auction.”

Nevada posted the nation’s highest foreclosure rate for the 59th straight month in November despite artificially low foreclosure activity caused by a new state law that took effect in October (AB 284) that alters the foreclosure process in the state. A total of 6,512 Nevada properties received a foreclosure filing in November, up 3 percent from a 45-month low in October, but still down 43 percent from November 2010. One in every 175 Nevada housing units had a foreclosure filing in November, more than three times the national average.

Scheduled trustee’s sales in California hit a 10-month high in November, helping the state maintain the nation’s second highest foreclosure rate: one in every 211 properties with a foreclosure filing during the month. A total of 26,509 trustee’s sales were scheduled in California in November, up 14 percent from November 2010 — the first year-over-year increase in scheduled foreclosure auctions in California since March 2010.

Arizona foreclosure activity increased on a year-over-year basis in November for the first time since October 2010, and the state posted the nation’s third highest foreclosure rate for the fifth month in a row. One in every 256 Arizona properties had a foreclosure filing in November, more than twice the national average.

Substantial monthly increases in foreclosure activity in Utah and Georgia lifted those states’ foreclosure rates into the nation’s top five in November. Utah’s foreclosure rate of one in every 290 housing units with a foreclosure filing ranked No. 4 thanks to a 74 percent monthly increase in foreclosure activity, and Georgia’s foreclosure rate of one in every 330 housing units with a foreclosure filing ranked No. 5 thanks to a 23 percent monthly increase in foreclosure activity.

Other states with foreclosure rates ranking among the top 10 were Michigan, Florida, Illinois, Ohio and South Carolina. South Carolina cracked the top 10 for the first time since RealtyTrac began issuing its report in 2005. There were a total of 63,689 California properties with foreclosure filings in November, the most of any state and 28 percent of the national total. Florida foreclosure activity in November decreased 25 percent from a 13-month high in October, but the state still had 24,739 properties with foreclosure filings during the month — the nation’s second highest total. There were a total of 13,777 Michigan properties with foreclosure filings in November, the nation’s third highest state total despite a 14 percent decrease from October.Illinois documented the fourth highest state foreclosure activity total in November, 12,398 properties with foreclosure filings, and Georgia documented the fifth highest state foreclosure activity total, 12,327 properties with foreclosure filings during the month.

California cities account for nine of top 10 metro foreclosure rates. Nine out of the nation’s 10 highest foreclosure rates among metropolitan areas with a population of 200,000 or more were in California. The only exception was Las Vegas, which ranked No. 6 with one in every 150 housing units with a foreclosure filing in November. With one in every 120 housing units with a foreclosure filing during the month, Stockton, Calif., posted the nation’s highest metro foreclosure rate for the second month in a row. There were a total of 1,913 Stockton properties with a foreclosure filing in November, up 20 percent from the previous month and up 9 percent from November 2010. The increase in Stockton was driven largely by a 65 percent month-over-month increase in scheduled foreclosure auctions. The eight other California cities with foreclosure rates ranking among the top 10 all posted double-digit percentage increases in scheduled foreclosure auctions in November, ranging from a 37 percent month-over-month increase in Modesto to a 100 percent month-over-month increase in Fresno.

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