From the APP:
New Jersey led the nation in foreclosure starts in the second quarter, as the mortgage industry continues to deal with a backlog of loans that went bad in the housing crash.
Lenders started foreclosure proceedings on 0.75 percent of mortgages in the state during the quarter, the Mortgage Bankers Association reported this week. That compares with a national rate of 0.32 percent, the lowest rate since 2000.
And about 11.6 percent of New Jersey mortgages were either in foreclosure or delinquent on payments during the quarter. While that number is down from 13.6 percent in the second quarter of 2015, it is still almost twice the national rate of 6.3 percent, according to the MBA.
The worst of the foreclosure crisis has passed in most of the nation. But the process has been delayed in New Jersey because the state requires lenders to go through the courts to evict homeowners who default. In addition, the state slowed down foreclosure activity several years ago while the mortgage industry answered allegations of abusing homeowners’ rights.
In the first half of the year, the mortgage industry has started foreclosures on 15,346 homes in New Jersey, down from about 20,000 in the same period last year. It takes, on average, more than three years to evict a homeowner in default in New Jersey, among the longest periods in the country, according to Attom Data Solutions, a California company that tracks real estate markets around the nation.