Now Showing: The Repossessed


U.S. banks may be in trouble, but they’re not too busy bailing red ink out of their yachts to stop foreclosing on your home — and yours and yours and yours and yours . . .

Hot off the server, Bob Ivry of Bloomberg News reports:

Banks repossessed twice as many homes in May and foreclosure filings rose 48 percent from a year ago as falling house prices trapped borrowers in mortgages they couldn’t afford, RealtyTrac Inc. said in a report today.

One in every 483 U.S. households either lost the home to foreclosure, received a default notice or was warned of a pending auction, RealtyTrac said. That was the highest rate since the Irvine, California-based company began reporting in January 2005 and the 29th consecutive month of year-over-year increases. Nevada, California and Arizona posted the highest rates in the U.S. and New Jersey entered the top 10.

Get ready for another sales boom, but you won’t like the sound it’ll make. Here’s the twisted scenario that’s already starting to happen:

Foreclosures add to inventory and crowd out regular sales, Michelle Meyer and Ethan Harris, economists at Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. in New York, wrote in a report yesterday. Foreclosures will account for 30 percent of national home sales this year as 1.2 million foreclosed single-family homes will eventually enter the market, they said. They estimate foreclosed properties, which typically sell for about 20 percent less than other homes, will depress home prices nationally by 6 percent.

Oh, boy! There’ll be lots of homes on the market. Of course, some of them will the ones you just got kicked out of.

Hmm, maybe a war would help juice up the economy. Shit, we’ve already got one.