San Antonio Foreclosures Countered Thru Bankruptcy Filings

by Peter Vernon on cities

A number of San Antonio foreclosures are being countered through bankruptcy filings, based on a report from an Addison-based real estate firm. Troubled homeowners are increasingly using bankruptcy protection to save their homes from foreclosure.

In bankruptcy courts in San Antonio, Dallas, Fort Worth, Houston, Austin and Sherman, the number of bankruptcy filings involving distressed homes increased in 2009 to 12,170 cases, a 9-percent jump from 11,171 homes in 2008.

In the 60 Texas counties tracked by the Addison firm, distressed properties valued at $2.28 billion were involved in bankruptcy filings in 2009, an increase from $1.92 billion in 2008.

In Bexar County, where San Antonio is the county seat, foreclosure activity stepped up in February, bucking the declining trend nationwide. A total of 1,378 homes in the county were posted for the March public auctions, increasing the total number of home foreclosures for sale in the first quarter of 2010 to 4,346 units. The number for the March auction marked a jump of 25 percent from March 2009 and the first quarter figure marked a jump of 26 percent from the first quarter last year.

In 2009, the pace of San Antonio foreclosures in the residential sector stepped up by 24 percent to 9,934 filings compared to 2008. They also marked a 30-percent jump from 2007 and represented 1.3 percent of all households in San Antonio.

In contrast to the rising foreclosure pace in Bexar, the pace of residential foreclosures in Texas slowed down in January this year by 11.46 percent from December 2009 to 12,225 filings, including more than 6,000 real estate owned units. The January number, however, still marked a jump of more than 25 percent from filings in January 2009 and put Texas 27th among U.S. states in terms on foreclosure rates.

In 2009, the number of Texas foreclosures increased from 2008, but at a lower rate. More than 100,000 households across Texas were notified of foreclosure or delinquency, but the number represented only 1.06 percent of all households in the state. Texas was 29th among states last year in terms of rate of foreclosure activity.

According to analysts, foreclosures caused by toxic mortgage loans have been declining. They contend that the major reason for foreclosures now is job loss. If the state is able to step up its job creation programs and employ more residents, the number of foreclosures across the state, including San Antonio foreclosures, will be reduced.

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