Foreclosures Keep Creeping Back Up

It’s time once again to expand on our preview of foreclosure activity with a more detailed look at June’s stats in King, Snohomish, and Pierce counties. First up, the Notice of Trustee Sale summary:

June 2012
King: 645 NTS, down 30.2% YOY
Snohomish: 388 NTS, down 16.2% YOY
Pierce: 407 NTS, down 25.3% YOY

Still down year over year, but the numbers in all three counties are moving a lot closer to flat.

Here’s your interactive Tableau dashboard updated with the latest foreclosure data:

The percentage of households in the chart above is determined using OFM population estimates and household sizes from the 2000 Census. King County came in at 1 NTS per 1,294 households, Snohomish County had 1 NTS per 709 households, and Pierce had 1 NTS for every 794 households (higher is better).

According to foreclosure tracking company RealtyTrac, Washington’s statewide foreclosure rate for June of one foreclosure for every 1,249 housing units was 28th highest among the 50 states and the District of Columbia. Note that RealtyTrac’s definition of “in foreclosure” is much broader than what we are using, and includes Notice of Default, Lis Pendens, Notice of Trustee Sale, and Real Estate Owned.

Hit the jump for a larger version of the chart that shows the percentage of households in each county receiving a foreclosure notice each month:

Note: The graphs above are derived from monthly Notice of Trustee Sale counts gathered at King, Snohomish, and Pierce County records. For a longer-term picture of King County foreclosures back to 1979, hit this chart and drag the date slider to its full range. For the full legal definition of what a Notice of Trustee Sale is and how it fits into the foreclosure process, check out RCW 61.24.040. The short version is that it is the notice sent to delinquent borrowers that their home will be repossessed in 90 days.

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About The Tim

Tim Ellis is the founder of Seattle Bubble. His background in engineering and computer / internet technology, a fondness of data-based analysis of problems, and an addiction to spreadsheets all influence his perspective on the Seattle-area real estate market. Tim also hosts the weekly improv comedy sci-fi podcast Dispatches from the Multiverse.


  1. 1
    Blurtman says:

    A market dominated by investors, low down payment buyers, and government loans in need of a bailout. This might sound like a recap of the housing crisis of the 2000s but this is actually the face of the current market.

  2. 2
    Ryan says:

    Much of the slowdown in terms of NOTS was probably due to the changes to Washington’s Trust Deed Act, with the original and then the amended Foreclosure Fairness Acts being codified into statute.

  3. 3

    RE: Ryan @ 2 – The earlier act had a more obvious and certain impact. This more recent one it’s not so clear, but possible.

  4. 4
    Passed Doo says:

    As the world-wide economy slows
    The risk inside banks no one knows
    They fill us with lies
    Then to our surprise
    The Captain shouts out “Thar She Blows”

    The Limerick King

  5. 5
    ray pepper says:

    “negative equity, not foreclosures, are the problem”…..BINGO BINGO!

  6. 6

    Some Good News for the Economy

    I doubt it if will fend off any future FCs assumptions, but it may likely make the economic hill to climb less steep, especially food.

    I just filled up the tank with gas for about a dollar less a gallon than about a month ago.

  7. 7
    Blurtman says:

    RE: softwarengineer @ 6 – Time to buy that new Tahoe.

  8. 8

    RE: softwarengineer @ 6 – I’m not sure that’s good news for the economy. It’s sort of like unemployment at 8.2%. It’s an indication the economy sucks!

  9. 9
    Dweezil says:

    RE: softwarengineer @ 6
    Oh that is terrible news. Surely the government needs to step in and help the Gasoline Recovery.

  10. 10

    By Dweezil @ 9:

    RE: softwarengineer @ 6
    Oh that is terrible news. Surely the government needs to step in and help the Gasoline Recovery.

    Just be thankful that they finally decided that they have enough money, and lowered their prices which they can reportedly set on a whim. /sarc

  11. 11
    MichaelB says:

    By ray pepper @ 5:

    “negative equity, not foreclosures, are the problem”…..BINGO BINGO!

    The Tim says: “Actually owning your home—debt free—is the only way to make your home an actual investment”.

    If this is true, what kind of investment is a home in negative equity? If 25% of homes are in negative equity, what will be the impact on home values as people rationally seek to improve their financial position?

  12. 12
    Carl says:

    so does this mean that when median prices flatten out or go down in the next few months, we can attribute it to an increase in the “mix”, and that if we take out foreclosures, median prices are flat or even going up?

  13. 13

    RE: Carl @ 12 – It’s very likely the overall median will drop in December-January just due to fewer “equity” sales, or at least that will be a factor in whatever happens. REOs and short sales seem to just plug along in the same range every month of the year, where the equity sales are much more seasonal. The volume of King County SFR sales in December 2006 (before the 2007 mortgage crisis) was under 2,000 during a relatively hot market.

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