5:08 am May 10, 2010, by Henry Unger
Foreclosure notices in metro Atlanta rose slightly in May — 1 percent — compared with April, and increased 10 percent when compared with May of last year, according to figures just released by Equity Depot.
But this May’s total — 9,587 notices — is a 24 percent improvement from March’s record of 12,568.
“I think it’s safe to say we’re no longer showing the sustained increases we’ve seen over the last few years,” Barry Bramlett, president of Alpharetta-based Equity Depot, said in an e-mail. “The question is still how long will these huge numbers continue? Don’t think anyone knows the answer to that.”
For the first five months of the year, 50,148 notices were published — which eclipses last year’s record pace, Equity Depot data shows.
The foreclosure notices published this month in the 13-county metro area are for auctions on the courthouse steps set for next month.
Over the past several months, Bramlett has been noticing a deterioration in the commercial real estate market, which is smaller than the residential sector. Equity Depot’s figures include both.
“Most commercial properties are secured by short term, 1-3 year balloon mortgages,” Bramlett wrote. “I’ve heard many sad tales of apartment complexes, retail space, storage units, you name it, that are occupied and performing. But the owners of these properties can no longer find funding when their note is due. You have properties that are not in default going under with no recourse available.”
In May, Gwinnett County lead the pack with 2,022 foreclosure notices, followed by Fulton with 1,852. DeKalb was third (1,419), followed by Cobb (1,115) and then Clayton (805).
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