Foreclosure-plagued Nevada welcomes drop in rate


An auction sign for a foreclosed home in Las Vegas bends in the wind, Nov. 17, 2010.

Nevada’s foreclosure rate improved last month but remains one of the highest in the country.

One in every 407 housing units statewide received a foreclosure-related filing in October, down 39 percent from September and 15 percent from a year ago, according to a new report from Irvine, Calif., research firm RealtyTrac.

Filings include default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions.

Nevada had the second-highest foreclosure rate in the country last month after holding the dubious No. 1 spot in September and August.

Florida had the highest rate last month, with one in every 332 homes receiving a foreclosure filing. The rate nationally was one in every 978.

Nevada was helped by fewer notices of default, which start the foreclosure process. There were 1,690 notices statewide last month, down 39 percent from September, when banks, facing a new state law that could make it harder to seize homes from delinquent borrowers, filed a burst of default notices.

The law, known as the Homeowner’s Bill of Rights, kicked in on Oct. 1. It is designed to help residents avoid foreclosure through renegotiating a loan or completing a short sale, in which a bank agrees to sell a house for less than what’s owed on the mortgage.

The law also requires lenders to have a single point of contact for struggling borrowers and forces banks to provide clients with foreclosure prevention options and other information before seizing a house.

On Sept. 30, the day before the law took effect, 934 notices of default were filed in Clark County, the largest one-day total ever for the region, according to LV Default, a Las Vegas research firm.