In the month of May, 47,000 U.S. home foreclosures were completed, up 3.8% month over month but down 9.4% from 52,000 in May 2013, according to research firm CoreLogic. While an improvement, the number of foreclosures is still more than double the 2000 to 2006 average of 21,000 foreclosures per month. CoreLogic notes that the foreclosure inventory totals 1.7% of all homes with a mortgage in the United States, down from 2.6% in May of 2013.
The number of U.S. homes currently in some stage of foreclosure totals 660,000, compared with nearly a million in May a year ago. That represents a decline in the national foreclosure inventory of 37% compared with May 2013 and a 4.9% decline month-over-month. That marks the 31st consecutive month posting a year-over-year decline in the inventory of foreclosed homes.
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The five states with the highest number of completed foreclosures in the past 12 months were Florida (122,000), Michigan (44,000), Texas (39,000), California (34,000) and Georgia (32,000). The five states with the fewest foreclosures in the 12 months through May were District of Columbia (71), North Dakota (334), West Virginia (515), Wyoming (710) and Alaska (856).
The five states with the largest inventories of foreclosed properties as a percentage of mortgaged properties are New Jersey (5.8%), Florida (5.2%), New York (4.3%), Hawaii (3.1%) and Maine (2.8%). The five states with the lowest inventories of foreclosed properties are Alaska (0.3%), Nebraska (0.4%), North Dakota (0.4%), Wyoming (0.4%) and Minnesota (0.5%).
CoreLogic's CEO said:
The pace of completed foreclosures slowed in May compared to last month but I expect this to be a temporary respite. … Although difficult, we need to continue to aggressively clear distressed homes to ensure the return of a healthy housing market.
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According to CoreLogic, the 12-month total of completed foreclosures is at its lowest level since December 2007 and has declined every month for the past 8 months.