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Bay State Foreclosure Starts Down to Lowest Level on Record

Foreclosure starts in Massachusetts plunged 84 percent in June to the lowest level since the ""Warren Group"":http://www.thewarrengroup.com/ began keeping track in 2006.

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Foreclosure petitions, which begin the foreclosure process in the Bay State, totaled 245 last month compared to 1,548 in June 2012.

Year-to-date, foreclosure starts decreased 69 percent to 2,943 petitions. Last year during the same time period, 9,425 petitions were filed, the Warren Group reported.

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On a quarterly basis, foreclosure starts fell 83 percent in Q2 to 863. The second quarter total represents the first time on record petitions slipped below 1,000.

Foreclosure deeds, or completed foreclosures, fell 56 percent year-over-year to 329 in June, but are still at their highest level so far this year.

During the first half of the year, 1,575 homes were lost to foreclosure. The total represents a 67 percent decrease from 4,765 a year ago during the same time period.

In the second quarter, completed foreclosures were down by 65 percent from a year ago to 814.

""One reason we're seeing continuing declines in foreclosure activity is the sharp rise in home prices,"" said Timothy M. Warren Jr., CEO of the Warren Group. ""Fewer homeowners are underwater on their mortgages, which is helping the foreclosure issue.""

""Aside from the rise in prices, a healthy economy, improved employment picture and favorable loan modification legislation is causing these steep decreases,"" Warren added.

Foreclosure auctions also slowed significantly, with 607 auction announcements in June, down 45 percent from a year ago.

About Author: Esther Cho

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