Foreclosure deed filings are down in Rhode Island for the third quarter of 2014, according to a report published by HousingWorks RI at Roger Williams University on Thursday.
In all, 364 foreclosure deeds were filed in Rhode Island in Q3, down from the 382 filed in Q2 2014, a decline of 5 percent, according to HousingWorks RI. Year-to-date through the end of Q3 2014, however, residential foreclosure deed filings ticked up by 2 percent in the Ocean State from the same period in 2013 from 1,170 to 1,193.
Despite the slight year-over-year increase for the three quarters combined, the 364 foreclosure deed filings in Rhode Island for Q3 2014 are less than half of the total from Q1 2009 (858) at the height of the nation's housing and financial crisis, according to HousingWorks RI. Fifteen communities (out of 39) and the East Side of Providence reported year-over-year declines in foreclosure deeds filed for the first three quarters of 2014, while four communities reported no change and 20 communities reported an increase.
"We’re encouraged to see residential foreclosure deed filings continue to decline in Rhode Island," said Jessica Cigna, research and policy director for HousingWorks RI at Roger Williams University. "We had a large increase in foreclosures during the first quarter of 2014 compared to the first quarter of 2013, and that is still affecting the cumulative annual numbers. It will be interesting to see how this year plays out in the fourth quarter."
While the state's Q3 2014's unemployment rate of 7.6 percent is still way above the national average of 5.8 percent, it is still down from the Q1 2009 rate of 10.1 percent, HousingWorks RI reported.
Rhode Island's percentage of seriously delinquent mortgage loans, which are those more than 90 days overdue or in foreclosure, has been slowly but steadily declining since 2009 and was at 6.1 percent for Q3 2014, according to HousingWorks. The 6.1 percent rate is still higher than the national average of seriously delinquent mortgage loans during Q3, which was 4.65 percent.
"We know that many mortgaged homeowners in Rhode Island are still struggling, so we’d like to see our seriously delinquent loans come down below the national level," Cigna said.
Only eight communities in Rhode Island, including the East Side of Providence, posted a foreclosure rate higher than the state average for Q3, which was 0.2 percent, according to HousingWorks RI.