Foreclosures across the Natural State remain stymied despite the recent reversal in litigation that has plugged up the pipeline since late last year.
There were a total of 404 foreclosure filings recorded in Arkansas during May, down nearly 32% from April and 72% lower than in the prior year period, according to market data provider RealtyTrac.
Local real estate professionals say the number of new properties continue to trickle into the market and they have not seen any major impact on prices or new distressed listings since the cork was pulled last month in the litigation between out-of-state lenders and the federal bankruptcy court.
RealtyTrac reported 120 new filings in Benton and Washington counties during May, down 30% from the prior month and 74% lower than in May of last year. The region has a population of 424,404 with roughly 0.06% of its households in default with lenders. Benton County continues to lead the state in activity, ranking No. 1.
On the national scene, foreclosure activity has decreased on a year-over-year basis for 20 straight months, but RealtyTrac CEO Brandon Moore expects the activity will increase in the coming months making for a “bumpy ride through the back half of this year.”
He said default notices, the first phase in the lengthy foreclosure process, have started to rise now that a number of lawsuits have been settled. During May, foreclosure starts increased 12% to their highest level since October 2011 for the nation.
In judicial and nonjudicial states, Moore said there were high number of foreclosure starts, but that was not the case in Arkansas which allows both methods of foreclosure.
Lynnette Harris, broker with the local Coldwell Banker franchise in Rogers, handles foreclosure listings for Freddie Mac — the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp.
“We have continued to see these listings trickle in and sell very quickly. I don’t think we are going to see a major impact on prices now that the gate has been opened for more listings. We were flooded with them a few years ago and prices fell. But the values have since recovery quickly which gives buyers and sellers a history dynamic they didn’t have a few years ago,” Harris said.
Kim Souza with our content partner, The City Wire, is the author of this report. She can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.