Isle foreclosures accelerate in July

Hawaii’s foreclosure rate continued to rank near the bottom nationwide last month, according to data released yesterday, but the July rate registered a substantial increase over the same month last year.

Although sales volume and in some cases prices are falling in some Hawaii neighborhoods, continued demand for island real estate has kept Hawaii’s foreclosure rate low.

Hawaii’s foreclosure rate has been growing this year, along with the nation as a whole. However, foreclosures still have a limited footprint throughout the islands.

Hawaii reported 85 foreclosure filings in July, a rate of one foreclosure per every 5,777 households, according to a report released yesterday by RealtyTrac, the leading online marketplace for foreclosure properties.

The state’s foreclosure activity, which ranked 45th in RealtyTrac’s rankings, decreased 24.78 percent from the previous month but was up by 60.38 percent from July 2006.

However, the company noted that for Hawaii and several other states, the actual year-on-year increase may not be as high as reported “due to expanded data coverage in this state.”

Nationally, foreclosures are up 93.44 percent year-over-year, according to RealtyTrac.

Earlier this year, the company had forecast that foreclosures could grow by a third in 2007, as more consumers default on loans and lenders tighten their underwriting standards.

The company’s latest report, which is used as a predictor of real estate trends by the likes of MSN Real Estate, Yahoo! Real Estate and the Wall Street Journal’s Real Estate Journal, showed a national foreclosure rate of one foreclosure filing for every 693 U.S. households during the month.

“While 43 states experienced year-over-year increases in foreclosure activity, just five states — California, Florida, Michigan, Ohio and Georgia — accounted for more than half of the nation’s total foreclosure filings,” said James J. Saccacio, chief executive officer of RealtyTrac.

Nevada documented the nation’s highest state foreclosure rate for the seventh month in a row, one foreclosure filing for every 199 households — more than three times the national average.

By Allison Schaefers, starbulletin.com

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