The housing crisis, which led to huge drop in personal wealth for many Americans, may be over at long last. "I think that it's really in the rear-view mirror," says Daren Blomquist of the real estate and foreclosure listings firm RealtyTrac. The foreclosure crisis, perhaps the biggest scar on the housing market, is rapidly going away. New numbers on filings, including default notices, auctions and bank repossessions show a sharp retreat across the country.
"Nationally we're seeing an acceleration in the decreases in foreclosure activity," says Blomquist. "There was a 15 percent drop just month-to-month from October to November in overall foreclosure activity and that was the biggest monthly drop we've seen in three years."
The seizure of millions of properties was perhaps the most painful part of the housing collapse. The collapse of property values left many more people underwater with mortgages higher than the value of their houses and apartments. The number of homes entering the foreclosure process has fallen by two-thirds since the height of the housing crisis in 2010. The numbers are coming down very quickly and even accelerating back toward a more normal level of foreclosure activity.
Described in its listing as a "historic and architecturally significant Beaux Arts manor home, meticulously restored to its original grandeur," it not only has six bedrooms and eight bathrooms, but 10 fireplaces.
Address: 279 Old Stamford Road New Canaan, Conn. 06840
This four-bedroom, five-bathroom Colonial-style home was built in 2000 and is set at the end of a private road. Its 4,688 square feet of open-plan living space includes a large walk-in closet and the master bedroom features a fireplace.
Address: 205 Summit Road, Mount Laurel, N.J. 08054
Set on about a half-acre, this 4,756-square-foot home was built in 1990. Along with a balcony that overlooks its "great room," the five-bedroom, five-bathroom showplace has a double staircase and a circular driveway.