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Foreclosures down in Florida

Last week, we discussed how the South Florida region experienced a decrease in bankruptcy filings last month. A recent report indicates that that the region has also been experiencing a decrease in foreclosure activity.

The report was issued by RealtyTrac and it looked at the foreclosure activity of different geographic regions of the country. According to the report, last month, foreclosure activity was significantly down in this region and Florida as a whole from last year.

Reportedly, foreclosure activity in Miami-Dade County last month was down 54 percent from April of 2010. Meanwhile, the South Florida region as a whole experienced around a 56 percent foreclosure activity drop.

This trend was also reflected at the state level. Reportedly, 59 percent fewer foreclosure filings were made in Florida last month than were made in April of 2010.

Does this trend mean that the economy is improving and that Florida consumers are facing fewer mortgage problems? Sadly, the answer could be no. The reduction in foreclosure activity could be due to the fact that the amount of time foreclosure proceedings take continues to increase in Florida. Reportedly, the average length of a foreclosure in Florida in the first quarter of 2011 was 619 days. This is a nearly 150 day increase from the average from the first quarter of 2010.

Thus, it is not yet clear what this trend of decreased foreclosure activity means for Florida consumers. It will be interesting to see how long this trend continues, what its causes are ultimately determined to be and what impacts it has on homeowners in the region and the state.

Source: South Florida Business Journal, "South Florida foreclosure activity down in April," 12 May 2011

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