Nevada’s foreclosure rate back to highest in U.S., report says
After a few months’ lull, banks are again ratcheting up the foreclosure process in Nevada.
One in every 359 housing units statewide had a foreclosure-related filing last month, more than double the rate in July and up 11 percent from August 2012, according to a new report from Irvine, Calif., research firm RealtyTrac.
Nevada’s foreclosure rate was highest in the country last month. It last held the dubious No. 1 spot in April.
The report, which counts default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions, showed a huge increase in notices of default in Nevada. There were 1,419 last month, up from 375 in July.
One possible explanation is that bankers have figured out how to operate under a new law that is supposed to make it easier for them to seize homes from delinquent borrowers.
On June 1, Gov. Brian Sandoval signed Assembly Bill 300, which changed a key part of Nevada’s controversial “robosigning law.” Under that measure, bank employees had to sign an affidavit saying they have personal knowledge of a home’s mortgage-document history before they foreclose.
The robosigning law took effect in October 2011, and afterward, Nevada’s foreclosure process practically ground to a halt, though it later picked up speed.
AB300, meanwhile, took effect the day Sandoval signed it. Under that law, a bank’s affidavit does not have to be based on personal knowledge; instead, it can be based on a review of internal lending records and either title paperwork or filings with the local county recorder.
The law should make it easier for banks to foreclose, thereby increasing the supply of homes for sale. Default notices, however, plunged 88 percent in June from the month before, according to RealtyTrac.
At the time, Nevada Bankers Association CEO Bill Uffelman said lenders must rewrite their foreclosure policies to adapt to AB300, as that might explain the drop in filings.