Foreclosures down in Spokane, up in Kootenai

Foreclosure activity in Spokane County fell 20 percent in February compared with January, but the pace remained more than triple that of a year earlier.

Banks repossessed 73 homes in the county, and another 126 were subject to a notice of trustee sale, according to RealtyTrac, which monitors foreclosures nationally.

In January, 249 homes were repossessed or subject to a notice. Only 59 were involved in a foreclosure action in February 2010.

The rate in Kootenai County increased 54 percent compared with January, and 60 percent compared with February 2010. Banks repossessed 41 homes, 108 owners received a notice of default, and 135 a notice of trustee sale.

One in every 1,002 homes in Spokane County was subject to foreclosure, and one in 214 in Kootenai County.

The national rate was one in every 577 homes, RealtyTrac reported.

One in every 298 homes in Idaho was subject to foreclosure, fifth highest in the United States. The rate in Washington was one in every 642, 14th highest.

Meanwhile, CoreLogic reported that home prices in Spokane County fell 6.63 percent in January compared with January 2010. Excluding distressed sales – short sales and sales of foreclosed homes – prices fell 3.43 percent.

More than 25 percent of home sales in Spokane County are distressed properties, according to the Spokane Association of Realtors, which reported a 2 percent increase in average price for homes sold through the MultipleListing Service in January. The median price decreased 2 percent.

CoreLogic, a financial information service, said Idaho home prices fell 15.7 percent year-over-year in January. Excluding distressed sales, the decline was 11.1 percent.

Both were steepest decreases among the 50 states.

Washington prices fell 6.7 percent – 12th highest in the U.S. – or 4.2 percent excluding distressed sales.

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