When comparing housing markets across the country, the worst-performing areas are usually located in the South, Southwest or West — such as Florida, Arizona, California, etc.

But there’s one city that’s doing surprisingly well despite huge market setbacks: Phoenix. The WSJ article, which is subscription-based (sometimes), says the Phoenix area’s housing inventory is down, investors are flocking to snap up properties to re-position as rentals, Canadian “Snow Birds” are buying properties at a fast clip, etc.

But there’s also mention of one thing that caught our attention: Arizona foreclosures don’t go through the courts. The foreclosure system there is ruthlessly swift and efficient. The market pain is real. But it’s over with faster. It’s not as prolonged a process as it in other states.

It’s something other states, such as Massachusetts, should keep in mind when it comes to foreclosures: Allowing the foreclosure process to drag out too long merely delays eventual recovery. It may even make the problem worse.

File under: Keep It Simple, Stupid