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Foreclosure starts hit all-time lows in 31 markets

In some U.S. counties, it is not enough to say that the foreclosure crisis is over. Foreclosure starts fell in July to all-time monthly lows in several high-flying markets like San Francisco and Dallas, ATTOM Data Solutions reported.  

Nationwide, foreclosure starts fell to an 11-year low with just under 37,000 in the month, and hit all-time monthly lows in 31 major counties with a population over 100,000, the company reported.

Blomquist“We are back below prerecession levels, the lowest level we have seen since May 2005,” said Daren Blomquist, vice president with ATTOM Data Solutions. Among the counties reaching new lows were the seats of San Francisco, Dallas, Seattle, Chicago, Houston, Miami and Manhattan, as well as San Bernardino, California.

Not all the news is good, however. Some 58 counties saw foreclosure starts rise in the month. Blomquist said the majority of the new starts are throwbacks to problem properties during the Recession, and don’t reveal market weaknesses.

The foreclosure pipeline is still elevated, however. Several states, particularly on the East Coast, continue to work through a large number of distressed properties left over from the downturn.

Blomquist said the overall market suggests that foreclosures will continue to decline. 

“Right now there doesn’t seem to be any imminent threats,” Blomquist said. “The weaknesses in the market are affordability, the fact that affordability is becoming very hard. The other biggest threat that I see out there is the global economy that could send some shock waves through the U.S real estate market.”  


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