Foreclosure activity accelerated in New Mexico in December from the previous month but eased from the same time in 2011, according to Irvine, Calif.-based RealtyTrac.
There were 933 homes in the state somewhere in the foreclosure process during December, an 85 percent jump from 505 homes in November but a small drop from 950 homes in December 2011. December was the busiest month for foreclosure activity in 2012.
Nationwide, foreclosure activity decreased 10 percent from November to December, dropping to the lowest level — 162,511 homes somewhere in the process — since April 2007, the foreclosure listing firm reported.
During the fourth quarter, however, foreclosure activity in New Mexico dropped 28 percent, from 2,752 in the final three months of 2011 to 1,989 in the same period of 2012. The fourth quarter also showed a 23 percent drop from 2,570 home in the foreclosure process in the preceding third quarter.
Foreclosure activity in the fourth quarter is roughly where it was in the third quarter of 2009, which might indicate that the housing crisis is beginning to wind down in New Mexico. Foreclosure activity, both here and around the country, peaked in 2010.
The pace of foreclosures varied greatly from one month to the next in New Mexico during 2012, which can be attributed to the state’s use of a judicial process to handle foreclosures. The process involves the filing of a lawsuit in state District Court against the delinquent homeowner.
The national trend has been for states with a judicial foreclosure process to have a higher proportion of foreclosures because it takes time to work through the court system.
— This article appeared on page B1 of the Albuquerque Journal