The nation’s biggest banks and mortgage lenders have steadily amassed real estate empires, acquiring a glut of foreclosed homes that threatens to deepen the housing slump and create a further drag on the economic recovery.
All told, they own more than 872,000 homes as a result of the groundswell in foreclosures, almost twice as many as when the financial crisis began in 2007, according to RealtyTrac, a real estate data provider. In addition, they are in the process of foreclosing on an additional one million homes and are poised to take possession of several million more in the years ahead.
Although REO inventory might be overstated in the story, the number of loans in the foreclosure process is much higher than 1 million. The MBA reported last week that 4.52% of homes with first-lien mortgages were in the foreclosure process. There are approximately 50,000,000 homes with first-lien mortgages, and 4.52% would be 2.25 million. There are another 1.8 million homes were the borrower is more than 90 days delinquent.
Although the numbers in the story may be a little off - one thing is clear - there is still a huge of glut of distressed homes in the pipeline.
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