Foreclosure starts across the West Coast plummeted in December as California, Nevada and Washington reported double-digit declines in new mortgages entering the process, according to ForeclosureRadar.
California, in particular, saw foreclosure starts decline by 30.6% to 16,465 filings in December, while foreclosure sales grew 3.2% to 11,097 transactions. The time it takes to foreclose in the Golden State also fell by 16.9% to 250 days.
The Discovery Bay, Calif.-based firm said California experienced an unexpected 45.8% spike in foreclosure cancellations from November.
ForeclosureRadar said the sudden rise stems from the closing of trustee sale locations in Norwalk, Calif.
“This closure caused more than 5,000 sales to be cancelled in December,” the company said. Those sales are expected to resume at other trustee locations in California.
Year-end foreclosure statistics
Banks filed foreclosures on roughly 205,000 homes in December, the lowest monthly total since November 2007, according to RealtyTrac, which said the 1.8 million foreclosures for 2011 dropped nearly 35% from 2010. Media outlets around the nation are reporting the new numbers from RealtyTrac that apply to their cities and states.Unexpected delays — including robo-signing issues that first arose in late 2010 — kept 2011 numbers lower than expected. One in 16 Nevada homes received a foreclosure filing in 2011. It’s still the highest foreclosure rate in the country despite dropping 31% from the year before.
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