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Foreclosure rate down in S.C., but distress continues


By Andy Owens
aowens@scbiznews.com
Published Feb. 11, 2011

South Carolina had fewer foreclosures than the national average in January, but in some counties there were large month-to-month increases, according to data released Thursday morning.

In its monthly U.S. Foreclosure Market Report, RealtyTrac national tracking firm noted that foreclosures in South Carolina fell 3.62% from December to January. In yearly reporting for January, foreclosures were down 6.32%.

The state ranked 22nd out of the 50 states and the District of Columbia in the rate of foreclosures. One home in 717 in the Palmetto State showed signs of distress, with at least a notice of default filed. In January, 906 homes were repossessed by lenders or sold at auction, RealtyTrac reported.

Nationally, foreclosures increased 1.39% from the previous month but decreased by more than 17% for the year.

“We’ve now seen three straight months with fewer than 300,000 properties receiving foreclosure filings, following 20 straight months where the total exceeded 300,000,” said RealtyTrac CEO James J. Saccacio. “Unfortunately, this is less a sign of a robust housing recovery and more a sign that lenders have become bogged down in reviewing procedures, resubmitting paperwork and formulating legal arguments related to accusations of improper foreclosure processing.”

RealtyTrac reported that five states accounted for more than 50% of foreclosures, led by California, where foreclosure filings were recorded for 67,072 properties. California accounted for more than 25% of the national total for the month. The other four states were Florida, Michigan, Arizona and Illinois.

Percentage change in foreclosures for January 2011


County

Lowcountry
Berkeley
Charleston
Dorchester

Midlands
Lexington
Newberry
Orangeburg
Richland
Sumter

Upstate
Anderson
Greenville
Spartanburg

Statewide
National

% change Dec. 2010


17.24%
-37.91%
-50.17%


57.43%
83.33%
122.22%
61.69%
-30.39%


-30.07%
-18.55%
-20.89%

-3.62%
1.39%

% change from
Jan. 2010


29.94%
-62.46%
34.23%


-29.33%
266.67%
-23.08%
53.45%
69.05%


96.08%
-28.32%
98.41%

-6.32%
-17.23%

Source: RealtyTrac