Saturday, October 10, 2015

RealtyTrac Reports Vacant Zombie Foreclosures Down 43 Percent in Third Quarter Compared to a Year Ago

Daren Blomquist
IRVINE, CA — RealtyTrac® (, the nation’s leading source for comprehensive housing data, released its Q3 2015 U.S. Zombie Foreclosure and Vacant Property Report, which shows 20,050 U.S. residential properties in the foreclosure process — but not yet repossessed by the foreclosing lender — were vacant “zombie” homes as of the end of the third quarter of 2015, down 27 percent from the previous quarter and down 43 percent from a year ago.

Vacant residential properties in the foreclosure process accounted for 1.3 percent of all vacant U.S. residential properties, with bank-owned homes (REO) accounting for another 1.9 percent of all vacant 1 properties as of the end of the third quarter.

The report shows a total of 1.5 million (1,500,456) vacant U.S. residential properties, 1.8 percent of all 84.7 million U.S. residential properties. Among the 1.5 million vacant residential properties, 36.5 percent have at least one open loan and 6.2 percent are seriously underwater, meaning the combined value of loans secured by the property is at least 25 percent more than the estimated market value of the property.

“The overall inventory of homes in the foreclosure process has dropped 36 percent over the past year so it’s not too surprising to see a similarly dramatic drop in vacant zombie foreclosures,” said Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac.

“What is surprising is there are so many vacant homes where the homeowners do not appear to be in financial distress — with only 3 percent in foreclosure or bank owned, and only 6 percent that are underwater.

“More than 63 percent of these vacant homes are not even encumbered by a loan, owned free and clear by the owner. The fact that the homeowners are not selling given the recovering real estate market in most areas indicates that many of these properties are in poor condition and in neighborhoods that have been left behind by the housing recovery.”

Markets with most vacant ‘zombie foreclosures’

States with the most vacant “zombie” foreclosures were New Jersey (3,997), Florida (3,512), New York (3,365), Illinois (1,187) and Ohio (1,028).

States with the highest share of vacant “zombie” foreclosures as a percentage of total vacant properties were New Jersey (9.4 percent), New York (8.2 percent), Nevada (2.7 percent), Massachusetts (2.5 percent), and Illinois (2.1 percent). 

 For a complete copy of the company’s news release, please contact:

Ginny Walker
949.502.8300, ext. 268

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