Foreclosure petitions rose in September

The number of foreclosure petitions initiated in September increased 22 percent from a year earlier but were fewer than the 1,833 petitions recorded in August. 

The Warren Group, which publishes Banker & Tradesman, two weeks ago reported that foreclosure activity fell in a year-over-year comparison. However, the data were incomplete.

In a report issued this week, the Warren Group said the petitions – the first step in the foreclosure process – totaled 1,420 in September, compared to 1,164 in September 2011.

Year-to-date petitions total 13,876, compared to 9,417 petitions a year earlier.

Foreclosure deeds in September dropped from 754 in September 2011 to 510, but year to date the number of deeds filed increased from 6,265 to 6,486.

Auction announcements decreased in September from 1,634 in 2011 to 904 this year. Fewer auctions have been announced during the first nine months of the year – 11,326 – compared to the first three quarters in 2011, which totaled 13,070.

In August, the state enacted a law to prevent unnecessary foreclosures and pushed creditors to take steps to avoid foreclosure on certain mortgage loans and instead promote loan modifications.

The Division of Banks will hold a hearing on amendments to the new law and how debt collectors and loan servicers can conduct business at its offices at 1000 Washington St. Thursday, Nov. 29.