Friday, June 29, 2012

Foreclosures in New York

Bill McBride who blogs at Calculated Risk commented on CoreLogic's 63,000 completed foreclosures in May, flat with April and below the year ago level, with a degree of optimism.  Like an iceberg, most of the inventory is below the surface, I suspect.  Here in lower Westchester County, New York walking around my old neighborhood, there are many homes at various stages of descending into foreclosure.  A flagship Mediterranean home in the neighborhood lay vacant for four years after the owner lost it.  It was recently purchased by new owners, not investors.  Most of the sales here are distressed, and the neighborhood is filled with homes not yet in the formal process.  The inefficiency and incompetence of municipal governments further impedes a resolution process.

As I've said many times before, banks never thought that they would be in the business of foreclosing, especially on such a large scale.  Banks can barely deliver core checking and savings accounts efficiently, and they certainly are not humane or efficient about foreclosures.  The mortgage servicers as a whole are a fly-by-night group and they weren't built for this either.

CoreLogic does note that foreclosure inventories are still rising in states like New York and Connecticut.  Believe it.

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