September foreclosure numbers show a housing market that is haltingly returning to health, according to Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac, a California firm that tracks nationwide foreclosure activity.
That trend is evident in the Capital Region, where activity typically varies dramatically from county to county. Foreclosure activity — including default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions — rose in Albany, Saratoga, Montgomery and Schoharie counties from September 2012 to September 2013, but fell in Fulton and Schenectady counties.
August-to-September activity showed a much more positive trend, with foreclosure activity dropping off across the entire Capital Region, except for Albany County.
“The sharp jumps in foreclosure activity in some local markets may come as a surprise to some,” said Blomquist. “These spikes in activity demonstrate that while millions of distressed homeowners have been pulled back from the precipice by foreclosure prevention programs over the past several years, once those programs expire or are exhausted, a percentage of these troubled homeowners are still susceptible to falling into foreclosure. In addition, even slight economic downturns at the local or regional level can push these homeowners hanging on by a thread over the edge.”
Nationwide, foreclosure activity was down 27 percent in September from one year earlier, but up 2 percent from one month earlier.
Here is a breakdown of local activity by county:
• Albany County had 50 foreclosure filings last month, up 178 percent from August and 25 percent from one year earlier.
• Fulton County had 10 foreclosure filings last month, down 44.4 percent from August and 23.1 percent from one year earlier.
• Montgomery County experienced five foreclosures in September, down 54.5 percent from the previous month, but up 150 percent from the previous year.
• Saratoga County had 55 foreclosures in September, down 12.7 percent from August, but up 205.6 percent from one year earlier.
• Schenectady County had five foreclosures last month, down 50 percent from a month earlier and 66.7 percent from one year earlier.
• Schoharie County had four foreclosures last month, down 55.6 percent from August, but up 100 percent from one year earlier.