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November’s foreclosure numbers are out in a new report from Foreclosure Radar, and they show a fairly typical trend: activity slowing around the holidays.

Lenders in November and December tend to run at lower staffing levels as employees use up annual vacation time and management focuses on evaluations and projections for the coming year.

Foreclosure sales and especially scheduled evictions have been stalled near the end of the year as banks, wary of bad publicity associated with removing families from their homes in the weeks leading up to Christmas, postpone lockouts until the new year.

Accordingly, new foreclosure starts across California were down 13% last month, and trustee sales decreased 12.7%. In San Diego, new foreclosures were down even more, at 14.96% below last month and 3.15% below November 2010.

Notices of sale, however, were up almost 26%, spiking to 1,691 from 1,344 issued last month. The pace is still off from 2010 by nine percent, however.

Just because a sale notice is given, however, doesn’t mean that a foreclosure is imminent. Following a consistent trend, more than half of the 1,720 properties scheduled to be sold at auction last month had their sales cancelled or delayed.

Of the properties that did go to sale, 206 were bought by cash investors at court-sanctioned auctions. Another 483 failed to attract a sufficient bid and became REOs, or “real estate owned” by a bank.

Pictured: Someecards sample

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