Housing & Transportation >> Foreclosures >> Trend

Foreclosure filings in King County have dropped since 2010, but have not returned to pre-2007 levels.

Foreclosure, one outcome of not being able to cover housing costs, enables lenders to recover the amount owed on a defaulted loan, or to repossess the property that secures the loan.  Housing security is important to health, and foreclosure has been linked to increased rates of hospitalization and mental illness.

The foreclosure rate represents the number of foreclosure filings divided by all existing mortgages for a given year.  Although King County’s foreclosure rate increased rapidly from 2006 to 2010, it has decreased since then and remains low compared to national rates. 

  • Foreclosures in King County began to increase in late 2007, slightly behind the trend in the rest of the U.S.
  • Foreclosures from 2007-2011 totaled 44,313, more than double the total of the preceding 6 years.
  • By 2014, foreclosures dropped to about 1/3 of the 2010 peak; however, neither the number nor the rate of foreclosures has returned to pre-2007 levels.
  • Homeowners who lose their houses to foreclosure often become renters.  This increased demand for rental properties can result in higher rents.