Driven by an increase in bank repossessions, 125,875 properties faced some form of foreclosure activity in April, representing an 18-month high, according to RealtyTrac’s U.S. Foreclosure Market Report.

Driven by an increase in bank repossessions, 125,875 properties faced some form of foreclosure activity in April, representing an 18-month high, according to RealtyTrac’s U.S. Foreclosure Market Report.

April’s foreclosure property count marks a 3 percent jump from March and a 9 percent leap from a year ago, but RealtyTrac Vice President Daren Blomquist emphasized that it’s a lagging indicator and a consequence of past foreclosures moving through the pipeline, not an indication of a current housing turbulence.

RealtyTrac’s definition of foreclosure activity encompasses default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions (REOs). At 45,168, the number of REOs in April was up 25 percent from the previous month and up 50 percent from a year ago to a 27-month high. The spike in April REOs, however, is still 56 percent below the peak of 102,134 REOs in September 2013.

“The REO increase in April was foreshadowed by a 23-month high in scheduled foreclosure auctions in October 2014,” Blomquist said in a statement. “Many of those scheduled auctions are now taking place, and properties are going back to the foreclosing lender.”

“While distressed sales typically have a stifling effect on the housing market, in this particular market an influx of distressed inventory could actually help stimulate sales during the spring and summer buying season as new listings become available, often in the middle to lower ranges of the market,” Blomquist added.


Both foreclosure starts and the number of homes scheduled for foreclosure were down in April from the previous month and year. At 51,773, starts were down 3 percent from March and 5 percent from last April; at 46,777, scheduled foreclosures were down 8 percent from March and 5 percent from a year ago.

Nationwide, the average sale price of REOs sold in the first quarter was 87 percent of the average estimated market value of those same properties at the time of sale. Some markets saw REOs sell at a much higher price-to-value ratio, including San Diego (100 percent), Charlotte, North Carolina (100 percent), San Francisco (97 percent), Bakersfield, California (97 percent) and Portland, Oregon (97 percent).

Markets where REOs sold for the lowest price-to-value ratio in the first quarter were East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania (62 percent), Akron, Ohio (66 percent), Atlanta (70 percent), Cleveland (70 percent) and Baltimore (74 percent).

REO properties that sold in the first quarter sold an average of 243 days after being repossessed via foreclosure, down from an average of 300 days for REOs sold in the fourth quarter of 2014 but up from an average of 226 days from the same quarter a year ago.

Following the national trend that resulted in a 27-month high of REOs in April, 33 states posted a year-over-year increase in REOs in the first quarter, including Florida (up 42 percent), California (up 53 percent), Michigan (up 198 percent), Illinois (up 46 percent) and Ohio (up 63 percent).

Email Paul Hagey.

Show Comments Hide Comments


Sign up for Inman’s Morning Headlines
What you need to know to start your day with all the latest industry developments
By submitting your email address, you agree to receive marketing emails from Inman.
Thank you for subscribing to Morning Headlines.
Back to top
Only 3 days left to register for Inman Connect Las Vegas before prices go up! Don't miss the premier event for real estate pros.Register Now ×
Limited Time Offer: Get 1 year of Inman Select for $199SUBSCRIBE×
Log in
If you created your account with Google or Facebook
Don't have an account?
Forgot your password?
No Problem

Simply enter the email address you used to create your account and click "Reset Password". You will receive additional instructions via email.

Forgot your username? If so please contact customer support at (510) 658-9252

Password Reset Confirmation

Password Reset Instructions have been sent to

Subscribe to The Weekender
Get the week's leading headlines delivered straight to your inbox.
Top headlines from around the real estate industry. Breaking news as it happens.
15 stories covering tech, special reports, video and opinion.
Unique features from hacker profiles to portal watch and video interviews.
Unique features from hacker profiles to portal watch and video interviews.
It looks like you’re already a Select Member!
To subscribe to exclusive newsletters, visit your email preferences in the account settings.
Up-to-the-minute news and interviews in your inbox, ticket discounts for Inman events and more
1-Step CheckoutPay with a credit card
By continuing, you agree to Inman’s Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

You will be charged . Your subscription will automatically renew for on . For more details on our payment terms and how to cancel, click here.

Interested in a group subscription?
Finish setting up your subscription