As you’ve been following here at, foreclosure rates have slowly started to recede over the past several months and today the real estate data firm RealtyTrac Inc. reported that the number of homes with foreclosure action filed fell to a level not seen since 2007.

This is a national foreclosure ratesnumber and 15 states actually saw an increase in filings but across the country the only lower level of foreclosure filings occurred in December 2005. (1) The rate of decline in foreclosures peaked in 2010 when 1,050,000 million homes were reported in some stage of foreclosure.

According to the report released today, there are approximately 1.2 million properties in the United States that are currently in some form of foreclosure. In November alone, there were just fewer than 53,000 filings. Lenders soon began shoring up their lending standards in 2009 and while that was obviously too little too late for the economy, the shoddy lending practices were most pronounced for loans issued between 2004 and 2008. 5 of the 15 states that experienced an increase in foreclosure filings showed an increase of repossessed homes on an annualized basis; Delaware, Maryland, Maine, Iowa and Connecticut.

This pace has slowed as the economy has moved into positive territory and the unemployment rate has continued to gradually fall over the years from the high of 9.9 percent in 2009 to the 7.0 percent rate reported for the month of November. Government programs have also helped stem the tide as home loan modifications became more easily completed as lenders found ways to reach out to borrowers and reorganize the home loan payments in advance of any default.

There will always be foreclosures in the marketplace; it’s simply a matter of how many. Economic cycles come and go and from all indications we’re still on the right track. Slowly perhaps, but on the right track nonetheless.