Foreclosures have hit new highs, this year.

While that news fits nicely into a headline, if you drill down, you learn a lot more.

[The Mortgage Bankers Association’s] Chief Economist Doug Duncan predicts that delinquencies would continue to rise, peaking later this year. He also points out that the rate would have fallen if it weren’t for substantial increases in seven states.

“The percentage of loans in foreclosure would be well below the average of the last 10 years were it not for Ohio, Michigan, and Indiana,” Duncan says. “And the rate of foreclosures started nationwide would have fallen were it not for the big jumps in California, Florida, Nevada, and Arizona. Those states have special circumstances that do not reflect what is happening in the rest of the country.”

That’s very interesting. Loans going into foreclosure in the “Rust Belt” are more a result of problems in the auto industry than because of the subprime lending crisis.

Massachusetts has it a little bit better than other parts of the country. As mentioned in another article I found somewhere, there’s less subprime lending exposure here than on average, countrywide (18% vs. 21% or something), plus we have a healthy economy, which gives owners in trouble other options than foreclosure (they can sell, instead, for example).

More: Foreclosures Hit 37-Year High – Damian Paletta and James R. Hagerty, The Wall Street Journal, by way of Realtor.org

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Updated:  1st Q 2018

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