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New Jersey foreclosures could soar next year

A report released by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York predicts that foreclosures in New Jersey may increase by 49 percent to as much as 140 percent by the end of 2013. The rate will largely depend on how quickly the courts can process outstanding foreclosure cases over the next 18 months. New Jersey foreclosure tends to take an average of 900 days, much longer than in some areas of the country. In some cases, families facing foreclosure choose to file bankruptcy to avoid losing their homes if possible.

New Jersey lenders were reporting 1,979 properties for eventual foreclosure as of mid-2012. Distressed sales made up 16.3 percent of all New Jersey residential property sales as well. Experts are concerned that the sluggishness of the foreclosure process will hold back ultimate economic recovery. Given New Jersey’s high foreclosure numbers, it will take a great deal of time to eventually clear all of the pending foreclosures, especially those in which debtors have sought protection through bankruptcy after foreclosure proceedings began.

A bankruptcy attorney explains the bankruptcy laws and protections to individuals who are facing foreclosure proceedings. In some cases, particularly those in which the person already has a great deal of equity in a home and then loses his or her job or suffers other sudden financial reversals, bankruptcy may be a sensible alternative to facing the loss of a home. Bankruptcy law does provide certain protections for debtors that allow them to protect a portion of the equity in their homes.

Source: The Record, “Dire foreclosure estimate for NJ by New York Fed,” Richard Newman, Oct 9, 2012

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