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Zombie foreclosures still plague select areas

Posted on Thursday, October 30, 2014 at 10:50:02 AM

A "zombie" foreclosure, or when the owner leaves a foreclosed house before the bank reclaims possession, has been a serious problem in the past for many people. Thankfully, the number of zombie foreclosures has dropped nationally, but several states are still dealing with this specific problem.

According to RealtyTrac, only 18 percent of all foreclosures were properties vacated by the homeowner. That accounts for 117,298 homes in the U.S. However, places such as New York City, Washington, D.C. and Philadelphia have all seen zombie foreclosures climb. 

Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac, explained that a revamped foreclosure process could be the solution

"The most effective preventative vaccine for the blight caused by vacant, abandoned foreclosures has proven to be a short and efficient foreclosure process," stated Blomquist. 

At the other end of the spectrum, CoreLogic reported that there were 46,000 completed foreclosures across the country. That is good for a year-over-year decline of 32.6 percent. The foreclosure inventory also dropped, down 34.3 percent on a yearly basis.

This decline can be seen as good news for the housing market. Fewer homeowners are having problems making their residential financing payments, and a smaller number of homes are actually lost to foreclosure process.