Foreclosure rates down, a sign of housing on rise

By: The Associated Press
By: The Associated Press

While the nation's foreclosure woes persist, new data show they're easing amid a resurgent housing market, rising home prices and efforts by some states to buy homeowners more time to avoid foreclosure.

Foreclosure listing firm RealtyTrac said Thursday that lenders repossessed 45,038 U.S. homes last month.

That's down 11 percent from January, a drop of 29 percent from February last year and the lowest level since September 2007.

Some states did see a sharp increase in homes lost to foreclosure, but most saw declines.

Foreclosures still remain at more than double the pace that RealtyTrac considers normal, roughly 20,000 a month.

Meanwhile, the number of properties that entered the foreclosure process in February increased 10 percent from January, but declined 25 percent from February 2012.

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