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Auctions fell 26.2 percent; deeds increase 46.5 percent

BOSTON, December 6, 2016 – Foreclosure petitions in Massachusetts fell by 15.6 percent in October compared with October 2015, according to a new report from The Warren Group, publisher of Banker & Tradesman.

Lenders in the Bay State filed 958 petitions to foreclose in October, compared with 1,135 filed in October of last year. There have been 10,530 petitions filed year to date in Massachusetts, a 9.3 percent increase from last year’s mark through October with 9,633. Petitions mark the first step in the foreclosure process, when lenders file notice of their intention to foreclosure with the Commonwealth’s Land Court.

“I think it is safe to say the foreclosure starts are finally in decline again,” said Timothy Warren., CEO of The Warren Group. “The backlog of old delinquent mortgages being fed into the foreclosure pipeline is drying up after two-and-a-half years of heavy processing work. The recent issue was never weakness in the real estate market or in mortgage underwriting. It was backlog of bad loans where action had been delayed.”

There were 566 auction notices filed in October, a 26.2 percent decrease from the 767 filed in October 2015. There have been 7,398 auctions scheduled in Massachusetts in 2016, a 29.9 percent increase from the same stretch in 2015 when there were 5,695. An auction notice is a legal advertisement that the lender has scheduled an auction and publicly announced the time, date and address in local newspapers.

There were 548 foreclosure deeds filed in October, a 46.5 percent increase from the 374 deeds filed at the same time last year. There have been a total of 5,250 deeds recorded in Massachusetts year to date, a 48.6 percent increase from the 3,533 filed through October 2015. Deeds represent completed foreclosures, when lenders record a new deed at the Registry of Deeds indicating there has been a change in the ownership of the foreclosed property.

Customers use The Warren Group to identify new business opportunities through access to comprehensive real estate and mortgage data, analytics, industry news coverage, networking, and education opportunities. Based in Boston, the company was established in 1872 and is now in its fourth generation of family ownership and management. It is publisher of Banker & Tradesman, The Commercial Record and Registry Review and architect behind some of the leading events and conferences for banking, legal, and real estate professionals in all of New England. For more information visit