Foreclosure Decline Deceptive

When to Buy and Sell Real EstateLast week it was reported Minnesota experienced an 18.1 percent decline in single family, duplex and multi-family in foreclosures and related activity in the first quarter of 2011, when compared to the same three months in 2010.

The decline, according to Realty Trac, the nation’s leading foreclosure data company, put Minnesota 24th out of the 50 states, with 7,539 foreclosure filings.

Filings included notices of default, scheduled sheriff’s sales, and repossessions.

Of these filings, 6,918  were in the Minneapolis, St Paul and surrounding communities.  Of the 200 metro areas surveyed, that put the Twin Cities 70th in the nation; not near the bottom, but clearly in the top half of the cities in the country.

While the drop in the number of filings initially appears like cause for celebration, it’s important to note that Realty Trac attributes most of this decline to the bank’s winter moratorium on foreclosure activity while they sorted out the paperwork they have been accused of mishandling.

In fact, while the 3,330 foreclosure filings in Minnesota in March represent a decline of 11 percent compared to the same month last year, it also represents a 57 percent increase from February.

In fact, the month of March alone contributed 44 percent of the quarter’s foreclosure activity.

While market activity does seem to be picking up in the duplex market, data seems to indicate we still have a long way to go before we see stability in the Minneapolis and St Paul market.