1.6 Million Homes Hit With Foreclosure Notices In First Half Of 2010

If you received a foreclosure notice this year, you’re not alone. According to tracking firm RealtyTrac, 1.6 million properties received a foreclosure filing — defined as default notices, auction sale notices and bank repossessions — during the first half of 2010. The good news: that number is down 5% from the previous six months. The bad? It’s up 8% from the first half of last year. And RealtyTrac doesn’t see any relief coming, as a “massive number of distressed properties and underwater loans continues to sit just below the surface.”

While June’s total of 313,841 properties with foreclosure filings marked a 3% decrease over the previous month, the news wasn’t exactly good for the housing market (not to mention the owners of those 313,841 properties).

“The second quarter was a tale of two trends,” said James J. Saccacio, chief executive officer of RealtyTrac. “The pace of properties entering foreclosure slowed as lenders pre-empted or delayed foreclosure proceedings on delinquent properties with more aggressive short sale and loan modification initiatives. …

“The midyear numbers put us on pace to exceed 3 million properties with foreclosure filings by the end of the year, and more than 1 million bank repossessions. The roller coaster pattern of foreclosure activity over the past 12 months demonstrates that while the foreclosure problem is being managed on the surface, a massive number of distressed properties and underwater loans continues to sit just below the surface, threatening the fragile stability of the housing market.”

The top foreclosure locations: Nevada, Arizona and Florida, with California, Utah and Georgia just behind.

1.65 Million Properties Receive Foreclosure Filings in First Half of 2010 [RealtyTrac]

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  1. PixDawg says:

    It is good to be retired and sitting in a paid for home. I would not want to be one of those poor folks…

  2. Alvis says:

    I find it hard to feel bad for people who buy things they can’t afford. Home ownership isn’t a right, it’s a luxury.

    • PixDawg says:

      Well, that much is true. I get tired of hearing about so-called “rights” that are nothing of the sort. Pure Socialist wet dreams and likely to bankrupt any country that insists on them. We are seeing that now…..

      OTOH, not all of these folks bought more than they could afford. Screw those greedy folks but pity those who did live within their means but lost a home due to losing a job.

      • jurupa says:

        Why should we screw the greedy folk? Greed is a good thing to have. Ya it sucks for those that lost their house that lived among their means. But why should we punish one group and not the other? You talk about how you are tired about hearing about these so-called “right”. I am getting tired of the lynch mobs going after those they despise in name of social justice.

        • PixDawg says:

          Lynch mobs? What I am talking about is a system of builders, mortgage people, as well as some home buyers that continued to pursue a foolish and financially ignorant course of action. There were MANY signs of a housing crash. It was so obvious that it was going to happen an idiot could see it. MANY experts had been saying so for years. I had been saying so for years, and I am no expert. To proceed with a high priced house on credit or to flip or speculate was risky and those folks deserve what they got. THAT is what I mean by greed Greed itself is not evil but combine it with blind stupidity and it is a recipe for disaster.

      • yusefyk says:

        If you were “screwing those greedy folks,” much of your banking and investment elites would be in prison.

        I guarantee none of them are homeless this month.

    • ElizabethD says:

      OMG. We are in a RECESSION.

      Some folks bought what they COULD afford at the time and now find their circumstances drastically altered. As in: Laid off. Unable to find new employment at anything near the old salary (that figured into the mortgage decision for the house). Lost their retirement fund in the stock market crash. Disabled. Widowed. OR their house has decreased in value in the past 3-4 years. Ours lost HALF of its value per most recent appraisal, so yes, we are underwater, and I just lost my senior-level job, and we still have two kids in college…. so after decades of hard, honest work and planning, we’re one of those you can’t feel bad for, I guess.

    • Master Medic: Now with more Haldol says:

      OK, how about a guy like me who was foreclosed on due to a job loss and inability to find ANY work after going thru $40K in savings over a 13 month period. Someone who actively chose a home well within my earning potential, put 15% down and never took a HELOC or equity out. And yet still was foreclosed upon.

      I don’t ask nor want your pity, sympathy or anything else, but blanket statements like are ignorant.

      • Alvis says:

        Not really; you took on a responsibility to pay off a loan without the means to. You just assumed you’d have a job in perpituity. That’s a bit naive, no?

        • wonderkitty now has two dogs says:

          Must… not… feed… troll…. ahh, can’t help it:

          So based on your point, no one should take out a loan, ever, because at any point the job could go away. Even the steady job one has had for years. Even when you save, like Master Medic, THIRTEEN months worth of expenses and go through it all because the job market sucks that bad. There is not enough anyone can do, ever, so no one should ever have a mortgage. Right.

          • NewsMuncher says:

            I wish the economics of the country/housing market were such that it would be reasonable/normal for people to save up for a house before buying it instead of having a mortgage. I almost wish the housing market crash would bring things to that state. There is a place for debt, but for it to be such a large chunk of anyone’s finances for such a large economic sector for such a large percentage of a person’s earning time span…

            • Bunnies Attack! says:

              You realize that it would take the same time, if not more, to save up for a house than to buy it with a mortgage right? I have a 30 year loan on my house at about $2300 a month. If I had to pay for the whole thing at once, I would have to rent at least a 1br apartment while I save up. I figure renting the apt would save me about 1.5k a month. Even with that, It would take me just shy of 20 years to save up enough to pay for the house… and this is NOT including inflation. If you have 3% inflation that $1000 per month is actually only $625/month that I’m saving ahead of inflation on the house which means it would take me 47 years to buy it. Buying a house outright is unrealistic for most people.

          • Master Medic: Now with more Haldol says:

            What’s really frustrating is I had to move to Denver from Phoenix and take a 33K/yr pay cut JUST to get a job. And while it’s not much above unemployment, I’m pleased to have it.

        • Mr_Human says:

          That’s possibly the most idiotic statement I’ve ever read here. By your logic, everyone who gets a home loan is being irresponsible because they can never be sure what the future holds. By your logic, then, only people who don’t need loans should get a loan. Everyone who buys a home knows there is a level risk involved. The real point of this article about foreclosures isn’t about how irresponsible people are (a tired cliche), but about the landscape of the economy.

        • theirishscion says:

          Gah, Obvious Troll is obvious. Bright, manipulative and obvious. Please stop feeding him. Look at the avatar, he’s put on enough condition already!

      • Verdant Pine Trees says:

        Don’t mind the troll. Like it or not, I do have sympathy for people like you. A lot of people got in over their heads; other people did everything right and then got handed their butt unexpectedly.

    • EtherealFlame says:

      Concerning “greedy folks” I’m wondering when people are going to start looking at a mutual lack of responsibility not only on home owners who don’t live within their means but also, if these homes are being foreclosed that means the banks had to approve these folks for the loans. In my world it boils down to this: The banks are lending far to much money to people. Do they not look at debt to income ratio anymore? Do they not check accounts anymore? When I went to buy my first house recently (which I just got the keys to, YAY ME!) the bank approved me for about 80,000 more then I feel they should have. I’m a single mom with a steady job, yes, but not rich by any means. But to approve someone that makes just a little more then min wage for a $180,000 home loan is LUDICROUS! I told the lender thank you, but I won’t be needing the full amount and the look on her face was almost that of disgust. Like, how dare you not use the full amount we have graced you with! So while it is easy to play the blame game, not everyone uses common sense when purchasing a home or borrowing money and I think the banks need to start becoming more strict on their lending practices.

      • Commenter24 says:

        The banks and mortgage brokers bear *some* responsibility for the loans made to those deliberately borrowing outside their means. However, the primary fault lies with the buyer who knowingly took more money than they could afford to repay.

        • Bob Lu says:

          You did remember that during the bubble age, all what the banks were doing was tricking people into believe that they can afford owning their own houses, and government outright lied about ownership being a right, or a fulfillment of the “American dream”, didn’t you?

          • Beeker26 says:

            There was also the promise of skyrocketing values of these homes. The idea goes something like this: tell people they’re getting an ultra low rate for 5 years, making the payments easily affordable. Then sit back and watch your new house go up in value year after year. Just before the much higher rates goes into effect you sell the house for a huge profit and start again. And people bought this shit hook, line, and sinker cause it looked like housing prices were never going to stop going up.

            But they did. And all these people were now stuck with houses that are worth LESS than what they paid for them after 5 years and facing a doubling (or more) of their mortgage.

            You can’t really play the “well if people didn’t borrow more than they could afford” game, because it’s not really accurate. I think it’s a lot more about being naive and being preyed upon by the finance companies that painted a gold-paved road for them that turned out to be pothole-ridden concrete.

      • Hoss says:

        YAY YOU!, you’re not an out of work mom with a kid with leukemia. Glad you got a crystal ball too.

      • NewsMuncher says:

        Amen.

      • Verdant Pine Trees says:

        But you see, the banks want people to borrow as much as possible, so that they in turn will earn as much as possible off the borrowed dough. That’s why the loan officer was so creeped out by you; she receives a higher bonus or maybe a promotion for every whale she can get to take on a bigger loan.

        It’s clear to me that the bigger banks see this kind of rash lending as a win-win. I couldn’t understand why here and in the news, I was reading about people who were qualified to get a “workaround” on their mortgage and instead were jerked around, eventually losing their house even after they got on track financially. Look through the archives. Anecdotally it seems like only 10-20% of the people who qualified are actually able to get back on track; the rest are stalled for months by their bank. I have a feeling that the bank would rather write off the debt/loss than negotiate, for tax purposes. Maybe they count on the lack of housing stock in some markets, and they assume with time, the prices will go back up.

        Or maybe they know in some places, the prices won’t return for years, and they’re gambling that they’ll get more by writing off the bad debt than they expect to see from the borrower (it may be, for instance, that just in terms of paperwork and labor hours, writing off the debt is more cost effective).

        Common wisdom is that these banks “want” short sales, and don’t want empty houses. That’s not what I’ve seen.

    • KeithIrwin says:

      Wait, they bought a house that they couldn’t make the payments on because they were greedy? So, instead of getting a more modest home which they could make the payments on and keep forever, they bought a bigger house that they couldn’t make the payments on, and so they got to keep it for a few years and then the bank took it back leaving them with nothing, and often, in fact, still owing the bank money. That doesn’t sound like greed. That sounds like a lack of knowledge about what was going to happen.

      Realistically, a lot of people who got in trouble weren’t greedy, they just didn’t have enough financial knowledge to understand what was going on. The guy making the loan said that they could afford the monthly payments on a house which cost $X and they believed him and went out and bought a house which cost $X. Then it turned out that they couldn’t make the payments after the end of the teaser rate. So now, they gave the bank a lot of money and got nothing in return for it.

      Here’s a question, by the way, if the loans weren’t engineered to be deceive the gullible, why did they have teaser rates? The only purpose of teaser rates are to trick the gullible into thinking that costs are cheaper than they actually are in the long run.

    • It'sRexManningDay! says:

      Maybe you could find it in your heart to feel bad for those people who bought homes they *could* afford, then lost their jobs and now can’t sell and move somewhere else for work because their home has depreciated so much that it’s worth less than they owe. This is a reality for many people who made all the “right” decisions with reagrd to the American Dream of home ownership, and now they are paying the price of other people’s financial mistakes.

      • Gaz says:

        This.

        Blanket generalizations are dumb, no matter which direction they are pointed in. There are smart consumers, mortgage brokers, bankers and investors who all got burned because of the market downturn. The converse is also true, without hard data it isn’t going to be useful to pretend like we know which group is in the majority. The intelligent position is to recognize that there is plenty of blame to go around, but to not try and pin it on any single group.

      • sois says:

        What’s so hard about walking away from the house and finding a rental? Nothing is stopping that from happening.

        • Beeker26 says:

          Do you have any idea how much it costs to move? Not to mention that most landlords now do a credit and employment check? If you were a landlord would YOU rent to someone who is unemployed and is walking away from their mortgage?

  3. ElizabethD says:

    *glub…. glub….*

  4. ZacharyCachimba says:

    Can you guys please just ignore news like this that’s sourced from RealtyTrac? Their sole business is profiting from foreclosures. The more there are, the better off they do. They are without doubt an incredibly biased source, and their database of foreclosures is horrifically inaccurate and outdated.

  5. mvillafana says:

    If the banks are genuinely concerned about people losing their homes and/or businesses (and they’re not btw), why not just **suspend** all foreclosure proceedings until further notice?

    • Gaz says:

      Because just like consumers, banks don’t have an unlimited pile of money they are sitting on that they can pay their bills with in the meantime. Suspending foreclosures means that all the money the bank has tied up in those properties are inaccessible. The loans the bank has taken out against its assets still need to be paid, just like a mortgage. When the mortgage stops paying, the bank needs to sell the property to pay down its related obligations.

  6. sois says:

    If you didn’t receive a foreclosure notice, you are alone.

  7. NydiaGeben says:

    “I thought Fannie Mae was in fine shape.”

    Signed,
    Barney Frank

  8. Tony Cartman says:

    This is such a complicated situation. And some specialists point that more and more foreclosures are coming this year