Foreclosures drop in Oct., but concerns remain

Some 255 home foreclosures were reported in October in New Hampshire — 22 percent less than in September and a drop pf 29 percent from October 2009. According to the New Hampshire Housing Finance Authority — which reported the foreclosure numbers — it was the first time in 2010 when monthly foreclosure totals were lower than a year earlier. But, the authority said in a press release, the decline is likely linked to the foreclosure moratorium on foreclosures announced by several large mortgage lenders at the end of October “and not an indication of a significant improvement in the underlying economic conditions which have been driving the high rate of foreclosures over the past several years.” Indeed there have been 3,523 foreclosures reported through October of 2010 – more than the 3,467 recorded for all of 2009. Some 750 foreclosure auction notices — often an indicator of the number of homeowners in jeopardy of losing homes – were recorded in October, a 21 percent decline from the 947 in September and the fewest recorded this year. The Mortgage Bankers Association also reported New Hampshire’s third-quarter delinquency rate was 8.01 percent – 1.38 percent below the national rate of 9.39 percent. Regionally, Rhode Island reported the highest foreclosure rate in New England at 10.11 percent. Massachusetts reported a rate of 8.60 percent, followed by Maine (8.31 percent); Connecticut (8.23 percent); and Vermont at 5.34 percent. – CINDY KIBBE/NEW HAMPSHIRE BUSINESS REVIEW

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