Oakland County mortgage foreclosures halved for first quarter of 2012

Mortgage foreclosures in Oakland County for the first quarter of 2012 are half of what they were one year ago. The total foreclosed homes sold at Sheriff deed auction is 1,088 for January, February and March of 2012, compared to 2,186 for January, February and March of 2011.

"Oakland County's improved mortgage foreclosure numbers is a cautious sign that our economy continues to recover," said Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson. "With job growth in the emerging sectors and auto industry, the housing market is beginning to stabilize."

The sharp decrease in mortgage foreclosures is due to better employment figures and property value stabilization, among other factors, according to Deputy County Executive Robert Daddow.

"If you have a job, you are more likely to be able to make your house payment," Daddow said.

Oakland County's foreclosure numbers are stronger than recent "independent" reports indicate because the county relies on the numbers from Sheriff deed sales, which come at the end of the foreclosure process and only applies once to a home. Some homeowners facing foreclosure are able to mitigate their problem without ever losing their homes after the bank has filed the initial paperwork to begin the foreclosure process.

Independent foreclosure reports, however, merely add up the number of initial foreclosure filings and other major milestones in the foreclosure process such as eviction notices, sometimes doubling or tripling the true number. These independent reports count homes with double mortgages as two separate foreclosures; and may count an initial foreclosure filing and an eviction notice on the same property as two separate foreclosure transactions. The independent reports do not account for the number of foreclosures that are resolved before reaching a Sheriff deed sale.

Published: Wed, Apr 11, 2012