Hawaii Foreclosures Drop Steeply in September


October 19, 2012

If you’ve been following the news for the Hawaii housing market, you might remember that state law forced foreclosure actions in Hawaii to go through the judicial system so that mortgage lenders would require a higher level of accountability. When this law went into effect, foreclosures fell substantially.

This September, foreclosure filings were 72 percent lower than they were in the same month last year, according to RealtyTrac. What an amazing difference. This isn’t to say the law was responsible for all of the reduction in foreclosures, but it did play an important part, along with a steadily improving economy. On Maui, the visitor industry, construction industry and retail industry have all shown consistent gains for quite some time.

Throughout the state, there were 114 properties with at least one foreclosure filing in September. That’s one out of every 4,557 housing units. That makes Hawaii the 45th in the nation for foreclosures. In September of 2011, there were 414 properties in foreclosure.

September’s number was also 68 percent lower than August, which is steep enough to look somewhat erratic. Slow and steady improvements are preferred because they are typically more reliable, but better is better.

In the third quarter, Hawaii had 666 foreclosure filings, which was one for every 780 housing units. That is still 13 percent lower than the third quarter of 2011.

Maui property sales have included a lot of the inventory on the market that was distressed and bringing prices down. You may have observed this if you’ve been searching for a Maui property for sale, and paying attention to those price trends. Fewer foreclosures combined with fewer distressed properties on the market are both factors in rising real estate prices on Maui.

If you are interested in more information like this, check back for next week’s blog! Mahalo for reading!

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