Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Foreclosures continue to increase

January and February have always been tough months for real estate and the first 31 days of 2010 stuck with that trend. When compared to last January, the number of deeds recorded was up 5% while the number of mortgages recorded was down 4%. When January 2010 is compared to the previous month – December 2009 – the drops are more pronounced. Deeds were down 21% and mortgages were down by 19% with the declines spread evenly among the city of Lowell and the nine towns in the district.

The big – and bad – news, however, is the rise in foreclosure filings, especially orders of notice, the document used to commence foreclosure proceedings. When compared to January 2009, last month’s orders of notice were up an incredible 546%. While that number is a bit misleading due to a lull in foreclosures last winter, this January’s 168 orders of notice still represent a 66% increase over the 101 recorded in December 2009. Foreclosure deeds are up even more, rising 84% (from 32 to 59) for the district, 70% (20 to 34) for Lowell, and 108% (12 to 25) for the nine towns.

Because sales volume and prices remain stagnant, it’s almost certain that these new orders of notice will result in foreclosures in the months to come.

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