News Column

NM Home Repos Jump in March

April 12, 2013

Home repossessions took a jump in New Mexico during March, bucking the national trend of a decline in repo activity, according to foreclosure listing firm RealtyTrac.

Lenders took back 301 homes in foreclosure last month, by far the highest number of repossessions statewide since September 2011. For comparison, only 118 homes were repossessed statewide in the preceding February and 128 homes were repossessed in March 2012.

New Mexico was one of 16 states to see bank repossessions of homes increase in March. Nationwide, repos dropped on average to the lowest level since September 2007, Irvine, Calif.-based RealtyTrac reported.

In many states, half or more of all homes entering the foreclosure process currently wind up getting sold through short sales, which basically replace a bank repossession. RealtyTrac's data does not include short sales.

In all, 758 homes in New Mexico were somewhere in the foreclosure process in March, not far off 2012's monthly average of 780 homes in the process. On a month-to-month basis, activity in the state can spike up or down depending on whether or not big lenders are filing batches of foreclosure actions.

One of 24 states with a judicial foreclosure process, New Mexico requires lenders to file a civil lawsuit against homeowners in default on mortgages.

During the first quarter of this year, 1,950 homes in New Mexico were somewhere in the foreclosure process, which can range from the initial filing of the lawsuit to a foreclosure sale or bank repossession.

The 1,950 homes in foreclosure was down slightly from 1,989 homes in the fourth quarter of 2012, but was a sharp drop of 23 percent from 2,531 homes in the first quarter of 2012. The busiest first quarter for foreclosure activity was in 2010, when 3,338 homes were somewhere in the process.

Nationwide, foreclosure activity also dropped by 23 percent from the first quarter of 2012 to the first quarter of this year.

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(c)2013 the Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, N.M.)

Distributed by MCT Information Services


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Source: Copyright Albuquerque Journal (NM) 2013


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