U.S. Foreclosure Activity In April 2022 Declines Slightly

ATTOM released its April 2022 U.S. Foreclosure Market Report, which shows there were a total of 30,674 U.S. properties with foreclosure filings — default notices, scheduled auctions or bank repossessions — down 8 percent from a month ago but up 160 percent from a year ago.

Illinois, New Jersey and Ohio had the highest foreclosure rates

Nationwide one in every 4,580 housing units had a foreclosure filing in April 2022. States with the highest foreclosure rates were Illinois (one in every 2,241 housing units with a foreclosure filing); New Jersey (one in every 2,292 housing units); Ohio (one in every 2,585 housing units); Indiana (one in every 2,660 housing units); and Nevada (one in every 3,043 housing units).

Among the 223 metropolitan statistical areas with a population of at least 200,000, those with the highest foreclosure rates in April 2022 were Greeley, CO (one in every 1,237 housing units with a foreclosure filing); Cleveland, OH (one in every 1,326 housing units); Elkhart, IN (one in every 1,531 housing units); Fayetteville, NC (one in every 1,639 housing units); and Chicago, IL (one in every 1,851 housing units).

Those metropolitan areas with a population greater than 1 million, with the worst foreclosure rates in April 2022, aside from Cleveland, OH and Chicago, IL were: Philadelphia, PA (one in every 2,196 housing units); Indianapolis, IN (one in every 2,268 housing units); and Riverside, CA (one in every 2,366 housing units).

Foreclosure starts remain unchanged from last month

Lenders started the foreclosure process on 22,286 U.S. properties in April 2022, just down slightly from 22,360 last month but up 251 percent from a year ago.

Counter to the national trend, states that had at least 100 foreclosure starts in April 2022 and saw the greatest monthly increases in foreclosure starts included: Massachusetts (up 133 percent); Colorado (up 95 percent); Minnesota (up 59 percent); Indiana (up 39 percent); and Washington (up 24 percent).

In looking more granular, those counties that had the greatest number of foreclosure starts in April 2022 included: Cook County, IL (759 foreclosure starts); Los Angeles County, CA (652 foreclosure starts); Harris County, TX (429 foreclosure starts); Maricopa County, AZ ( 331 foreclosure starts); and Philadelphia, PA (277 foreclosure starts).

“The extreme difference between foreclosure starts and foreclosure completions in April might be the beginning of a trend,” said Rick Sharga, executive Vice President of market intelligence for ATTOM. “Record levels of homeowner equity should provide financially distressed homeowners the opportunity to sell their homes prior to a foreclosure auction, meaning we should continue to see fewer foreclosure completions. While it may take several months to determine if this is actually what’s happening, it seems like a real possibility in today’s low supply/high demand housing market.”

Foreclosure completion numbers decrease 36 percent from last month

Lenders repossessed 2,830 U.S. properties through completed foreclosures (REOs) in April 2022, down 36 percent from last month but up 82 percent from last year.

Those states that had the greatest number of REOs in April 2022, included: Illinois (417 REOs); Pennsylvania (266 REOs); Michigan (187 REOs); Ohio (150 REOs); and California (148 REOs).

Those major metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) with a population greater than 1 million that saw the greatest number of REOs in April 2022 included: Chicago, IL (347 REOs); Philadelphia, PA (149 REOs); New York, NY (128 REOs); Detroit, MI (64 REOs); and St. Louis, MO (53 REOs).