Mass. Foreclosures Up Nearly 27 %”

The Boston Globe; October 22, 2010

Foreclosures in Massachusetts kept climb­ing in September as 890 home­own­ers lost their prop­er­ties, a 26.6 per­cent increase com­pared with the same month last year, accord­ing to data released yes­ter­day by Warren Group, a Boston com­pany that tracks local real estate.  So far this year, 10,777 prop­er­ties have been fore­closed on statewide, a 58.6 per­cent increase from the 6,796 recorded dur­ing the same period last year and more than all the fore­clo­sures recorded in 2009, Warren Group said.  The num­bers come amid grow­ing con­cern that some major national lenders have been improp­erly con­duct­ing fore­clo­sures in an effort to speed up the process and evict delin­quent own­ers. Attorneys gen­eral from across the coun­try recently said they are exam­in­ing fore­clo­sure prac­tices, and the US Senate has sched­uled a hear­ing next month on how fore­clo­sures are con­ducted.  At the same time, econ­o­mists, com­mu­nity offi­cials, and hous­ing advo­cates worry that the high num­ber of fore­closed prop­er­ties in par­tic­u­lar mar­kets is affect­ing not only indi­vid­ual fam­i­lies but entire neigh­bor­hoods. Parag Pathak, a Massachusetts Institute of Technology econ­o­mist, said a fore­clo­sure can make it dif­fi­cult for other home­own­ers to sell their prop­er­ties, lead­ing to even more homes being seized.”

By Jennifer McKim