Horry’s foreclosure rate plummets in April

May 16, 2014 

The foreclosure rate in Horry County dropped 50 percent in April and nearly 70 percent since last year, according to a national tracking company.

But it can’t pinpoint the reason why.

Darren Blomquist, vice president of RealtyTrac, said it could be that a backlog of foreclosures from the recession has made it way through the court system, a process recently boosted by the resurgence of the area’s real estate market.

For a year, South Carolina has been among the states with the highest foreclosure rates and Horry County has been among the tops in the state.

The state still had the nation’s sixth highest foreclosure rate, according to RealtyTrac’s latest report, but Horry County recorded a rate of just one foreclosure in every 1,181 housing units.

RealtyTrac’s numbers don’t correlate with those of SiteTech Systems, a Myrtle Beach company that tracks area real estate.

Todd Woodard, SiteTech president, said Friday that foreclosures in Horry County have been flat since July 2013.

SiteTech counts foreclosures as the action is initiated. RealtyTrac uses every foreclosure action in its count, a method that could include more than one action on a single home.

Horry’s rate, according to RealtyTrac, had hovered in the area of one per 600 t0 700 for the last year, which often made it among the top five in South Carolina. Now the county is far off the leader board, and recording a lower foreclosure rate than any of the state’s other most populous counties.

Greenville County, for instance, had an April rate of one foreclosure in every 609 housing units, the state’s fourth highest rate.

York, Lexington, Spartanburg and Richland counties all were in the top 10.

Charleston County’s April rate came in slightly higher than Horry’s at one foreclosure in every 1,151 housing units.

Marion County recorded the lowest S.C. rate at one in every 7,485 housing units.

South Carolina is among those states where foreclosures require court action, and they tended to have high foreclosure rates longer than states where foreclosures are handled administratively.

Blomquist said the fact that Horry County has both second home and retirement home buyers may have allowed some homes near foreclosure to escape the ax by finding buyers.

Woodard noted some further statistics that could reinforce how the strong real estate market is impacting foreclosures:

• Distressed home inventory for sale was down 32.3 percent in April when compared to a year earlier.

• Delinquencies of more than 90 days are down 17.8 percent year over year.

• The percent of mortgages in foreclosure is down 46 percent in the same time.

Read more here: http://www.myrtlebeachonline.com/2014/05/14/4227029/market-common-development-sets.html#storylink=cpy

Contact STEVE JONES at 444-1765 or on Twitter @TSN_sjones.

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