U.S. foreclosures hit a 12-year low in 2017

Andy Dean Photography /

Attom Data Solutions today released its Year-End Foreclosure Market Report, which revealed that foreclosure filings were submitted on 676,535 U.S. properties — a 27 percent year-over-year decline and the lowest level since 2005.

The filings, which included default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions, accounted for 0.51 percent of all housing units, down 0.19 percentage points from 2016 (0.70). It’s also the lowest percentage of filings seen since peaking in 2010 (2.23 percent).

2017 ended with 64,651 U.S. properties with foreclosure filings, a 1 percent month-over-month increase and a 25 percent year-over-year decrease from 2016 — the 27th consecutive month with a year-over-year decrease in foreclosure activity.

“Thanks to a housing boom driven primarily by a scarcity of supply, which has helped to limit home purchases to the most highly qualified — and low-risk — borrowers, the U.S. housing market has the luxury of playing a version of foreclosure limbo in which it searches for how low foreclosures can go,” said Attom Data Solutions senior vice president Daren Blomquist in a statement.

“There are a few notable local market exceptions playing a different version of foreclosure limbo in which a backlog of legacy foreclosure activity left over from the last housing crisis is still winding its way through a labyrinthine foreclosure process, resulting in incongruous jumps in various stages of foreclosure activity in markets such as New York, New Jersey and DC.”

Foreclosures by the numbers

About the study

The Attom Data Solutions Year-End U.S. Foreclosure Market Report provides a count of the total number of properties with at least one foreclosure filing entered into the Attom Data Warehouse during the year. Some foreclosure filings entered into the database during the year may have been recorded in the previous year. Data is collected from more than 2,500 counties nationwide, and those counties account for more than 90 percent of the U.S. population. Attom’s report incorporates documents filed in all three phases of foreclosure: DefaultNotice of Default (NOD) and Lis Pendens (LIS); Auction — Notice of Trustee Sale and Notice of Foreclosure Sale (NTS and NFS); and Real Estate Owned, or REO properties (that have been foreclosed on and repurchased by a bank).

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