Friday, July 03, 2015

Closer look at 2015 foreclosures


Earlier this week I wrote posts comparing recording statistics from the first half of 2015 to the first half of 2014 and another comparing recordings in June 2015 to June 2014.  The number of foreclosures was up significantly in both periods which warranted a closer look.  Here's what I found when I scrutinized foreclosure deeds recorded in June 2015 which I reported had risen from 5 to 16, a jump of 220%.

The first thing I found was that there were really only 14 foreclosure deeds during this period.  One property straddled the boundary between Tewksbury and Lowell so it showed up in the index query three different times: as Lowell, Tewksbury and "multiple" towns.  Still, the 14 foreclosure deeds still constitute a 180% increase which is also a worrisome number.

On to a closer look at the individual mortgages involved in these foreclosures:



Four of the mortgages that were foreclosed were obtained at the same time the property was purchased.  One was from 2003, two from 2005, and one from 2006, with down payments of 5%, 11%, 25% and 25%).  Two other mortgages were on properties that had been received by the borrowers as gifts.  One was a $283,000 mortgage from 2004 on a property that was obtained in 1989 for $1; the other was a $287,000 mortgage from 2014 on a property that was obtained in 2009 for $1.

The eight remaining mortgages all involved refinancings in which the borrower had purchased the property earlier with another mortgage, but then obtained a new, post-purchase mortgage which is the one that was foreclosed.  The following list shows the dates and amounts of the mortgages, followed by the dates and amounts of the purchase deeds:

  • ·         2003 mortgage of $215,000; 1998 deed of $158,000
  • ·        2004 mortgage of $252,000; 2003 deed of $265,000
  • ·        2005 mortgage of $185,000; 1999 deed of $97,000
  • ·        2005 mortgage of $280,000; 2001 deed of $305,000
  • ·        2005 mortgage of $222,000; 2004 deed of $278,000
  • ·        2007 mortgage of $389,000; 2005 deed of $360,000
  • ·        2007 mortgage of $339,000; 1996 deed of $153,500
  • ·        2009 mortgage of $348,000; 2004 deed of $175,000

Thursday, July 02, 2015

Mid Year Recording Statistics

Here are some recording statistics for certain types of documents for the first half of 2015 when compared to the same period in 2014:

Deeds were down 1%, dropping from 3045 in 2014 to 3018 in 2015;

Mortgages were up 38%, rising from 3948 in 2014 to 5434 in 2015;

Foreclosure deeds were up 26%, rising from 68 to 86;

Orders of notice were up 21%, rising from 153 to 185;

Total documents were up 13%, rising from 24973 in the first half of 2014 to 28249 in the first half of 2015.

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

June recording statistics

There were some positive signs for the housing market in our June recording statistics.  When compared to the recording numbers from June 2014:

Deed were up 20% (640 in June 2014 to 769 in June 2015);

Mortgages were up 35% (910 in June 2014 to 1212 in June 2015);

Foreclosure deeds were up 220% (5 to 16);

Orders of notice were up 54% (29 to 31);

Total documents were up 32% (5095 in June 2014 to 6708 in June 2015).

While the increases in foreclosure deeds and orders of notice would be troubling if just the percentage increases were considered, the overall number is still low so it is less troublesome.  At some point I'll take a closer look in a future blog post at these June 2015 foreclosures and determine when the mortgages being foreclosed originated.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Independence Day schedule at the Registry of Deeds

The Middlesex North Registry of Deeds will be open for business on Friday July 3, 2015 and on Monday July 6, 2015 for normal hours.

State law mandates that when a holiday falls on a Sunday, state offices will be closed on that Monday to recognition of the holiday.  The same is not the case when a holiday falls on Saturdays.  When a holiday falls on a Saturday as is the case with the 4th of July this year, government offices do not close on the preceding Friday (or the following Monday).  They remain open on both and employees are granted a floating holiday.

Thursday, June 04, 2015

Recording statistics for May

Here are the number of various document types recorded in May 2015 compared to the numbers from the same month last year:

Deeds: There was a 12% decline in the number of deeds recorded, dropping from 572 in May 2014 to 502 in May 2015.

Mortgages: There was a 24% increase in the number of mortgages, rising from 722 in May 2014 to 895 in May 2015.

Foreclosure Deeds: There as a 100% increase in the number of foreclosure deeds, rising from 12 in May 2014 to 24 in May 2015.

Orders of Notice: There was a 7% increase in the number of orders of notice, rising from 29 in May 2014 to 31 in May 2015.

Total Documents: There was a 4% increase in the total number of documents recorded, rising from 4464 in May 2014 to 4643 in May 2015.

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

SJC addresses bankruptcy and real estate liens

The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court in a decision released today clarified the effect of bankruptcy on an existing judicial lien on the debtor's real estate.  The Court held in Christakis v Jeanne D'Arc Credit Union, that unless the bankruptcy court expressly excludes such a lien, the lien survives the discharge in bankruptcy of the debtor.  The court reasoned that Federal bankruptcy law erases the personal liability of the debtor for the debt but it does not automatically erase the liability against the real property that was created when, as in this case, an Execution was recorded against the debtor's property.  So, while creditors cannot pursue any collection activities against a debtor who has been discharged in bankruptcy, the creditor can pursue the sale of the debtor's present or former real property that was encumbered pre-bankruptcy filing with a judicial lien such as an attachment or execution.

Congratulations to Lowell attorney Sandra Boulay who represented Jeanne D'Arc before the SJC.

Tuesday, May 05, 2015

April recording statistics

Recording statistics for April show some positive trends when compared to April of 2014.  Here are the numbers for the entire registry district:

There were 532 deeds recorded in April 2015, a 7% increase over the 497 recorded in April 2014;

There were 993 mortgages recorded, a 48% increase over the 497 recorded last April;

There were 20 foreclosure deeds, a 43% increase over the 14 recorded last April;

There were 30 orders of notice, a 21% decrease from the 38 recorded last April;

There were 4946 documents recorded; a 17% increase from the 4227 recorded last April.