The number of homes lost to foreclosure and the national foreclosure inventory continued to post considerable annual declines in March, according to data aggregator CoreLogic.

Completed foreclosures clocked in at 41,000 in March, down 15.5 percent from a year ago and 65.2 percent from their peak in September 2010, CoreLogic reported.

CoreLogic counted 542,000 homes, or 1.4 percent of all homes with a mortgage, in the national foreclosure inventory in March. That’s down 25.7 percent from a year earlier.

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“Based on the current trends in completed foreclosure rates, we expect the foreclosure inventory to drop below 1.3 percent by midyear, a level not seen since the end of 2007,” said Anand Nallathambi, president and CEO of CoreLogic.

The serious delinquency rate — defined as loans that are 90 days or more past due, including those loans in foreclosure or REO — slid by 19.1 percent year over year to 3.9 percent, down from a peak of 8.6 percent in early 2010.

That decline has led to improved housing market conditions, but it’s still well below the prerecession average of 1.5 percent, said Frank Nothaft, chief economist at CoreLogic.

Email Teke Wiggin.

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