Foreclosures ease in Arizona, California, Nevada

ForeclosureRadar: Foreclosure sales rise 39% in Oregon in 2010

Foreclosure starts and sales dropped in Arizona, California and Nevada during 2010, thanks in part to a dramatic reduction in foreclosure sales attributed to the robo-signing scandal.

According to public records compiled by ForeclosureRadar, foreclosure starts and sales continued to rise in Oregon and Washington, although the increase in foreclosure starts was less dramatic than in the past two years, the company said.

The decline in foreclosure starts in Arizona, California and Nevada was the first annual decline since the foreclosure crisis began, ForeclosureRadar said. The dip in foreclosure sales was also a first for Arizona and Nevada, while foreclosure sales in California declined for a second year in a row.

The first half of 2010 saw foreclosure cancellations rose as homeowners saw more short sales and loan modifications approved, ForeclosureRadar said. Investors flipped foreclosure purchases for profits as buyers hurried to take advantage of tax credits. But as the tax credits expired, the market began to slow.