From the Record:
New Jersey leads the nation in foreclosure activity, as the state continues to unwind the mortgages that went bad in the worst housing crash in decades.
One in every 598 Garden State households with a mortgage had some type of foreclosure filing in November, according to Attom Data Solutions, a real estate research company that is the parent company of RealtyTrac, which tracks foreclosures. That’s down about 7 percent from a year ago – a sign that the worst of the foreclosure crisis may be in the past.
Nationally, foreclosure activity declined by about 17 percent in November, compared with a year earlier.
New Jersey has been slower to deal with foreclosures than other states, in part because the state is one of about two dozen where foreclosures go through the courts, which tends to slow the process. In addition, mortgage servicers are still catching up after a period where New Jersey foreclosure activity was almost frozen while the industry faced accusations of abusing homeowners’ rights.
According to Attom, New Jersey has two of the metropolitan areas with the highest rates of foreclosure in the nation, Atlantic City and Trenton.
In Bergen County, foreclosure filings rose 5.3 percent in November, compared with the previous year. One in every 987 Bergen households with a mortgage had some type of foreclosure activity during the month. In Passaic, foreclosure activity was down 14.7 percent from a year earlier, but the rate of housing distress is still higher than in Bergen. One in every 554 Passaic County households with a mortgage had a foreclosure filing during November, according to Attom.