Sour Economy

Home Repossessions Up 25 Percent

Home repossessions are up 25 percent compared to a year ago, even as the number of homes entering foreclosure has slowed for the seventh month straight. In August, lenders repossessed 95,364 homes, a 3 percent rise from July, and the ninth month in a row that the number of homes lost has gone up on an annual basis. Banks have had a huge backlog of loans in default since the mortgage crisis began, but they can’t afford to just dump all repossessed homes on the market. That could overwhelm a buyer’s market and hurt housing prices. Right now, less than a third of lender-owned homes are for sale. Lenders have repossessed more than 2.3 million homes since the recession began in late 2007.